I am amazed how time flies when you are having fun (and how it crawls when times are tough) – it was only the other day I was sitting behind the wheel of my old Landcruiser (1995 model) as I bumped across the fields where I take my dogs for their daily walk with my windscreen wipers going on intermediate (even though it was not raining) and the lights on the dash flickering on and off. This vehicle has seen me and my family (including many dogs over the last 25 years) through lots of good times and a few bad times. My wife and I have other cars we drive to work or go on “to Brisbane” but the old Landcruiser is the one we take the dogs in – whether we are going to the beach or going into the paddocks.
I was so proud of it when I bought it many years ago – I finally had the car of my dreams. A big powerful machine that could allow me and my family to drive on beaches, take our canoes and water sports equipment into area where other people would rarely go. And we could do it in comfort – with the big front seats, the large arm rests and the dogs having lots of room to lie or sit in comfort in the back area (we removed the back seats within an hour of getting the vehicle and these same seats are still sitting in pristine condition on the top shelf in the shed).
This same vehicle has pulled boats and cars out of the sea water, has towed tractors out of bogs, has driven the family members to and from areas of laughter and joy, has driven in rain that was so heavy that you could only see around a meter in front of the vehicle – for over 8 hours, has forged flooded rivers (when the only way to safety was to drive through the water), has pulled our boats and kayaks to many different launching areas, has transported our entire family to hidden areas in forests and on beaches and has never missed a beat.
But now the engine is getting a bit tired, the radio does work very well, the heater stopped working a couple of years ago, the air conditioner cannot be turned off, it takes a tailwind of 100 knots and a downhill run to get past a slow moving caravan, the electric window in the drivers side only works when it feels like it, there are more rattles and noises than you would hear at a children’s birthday party, if you slam the doors then a large amount of beach sand falls onto the ground from the
chassis, the lights inside the vehicle only work on the dash and really on the speedometer and the windscreen wiper has a mind of its own – especially on clear days.
But it keeps on going and going and I would not part with it – too many memories. When times are tough and I need to escape from the maddening crowd then my wife knows where to find me – behind the wheel of my “Cruizer”, dogs in the back, heading towards a distant lonely beach – somewhere I can escape and “chill out” and let my batteries recharge. She knows I will be safe – the “Cruizer” has never let me down. Have a lovely and healthy spring.