Sometimes it’s the destination; other times the journey.
Sometimes it is both. A Saturday afternoon jaunt to downtown Kirkland, less than five miles round trip from our home, highlighted a personal sentimental journey and sparked memories of similar journeys for others before the day was done.
Mine is a journey that began 39 years ago. . .the year my ‘old friend’ and I first met .
It was the summer of 1972 in a used car lot when I first laid eyes on the funny little green German-made ‘69 Volkswagen “Beetle”.
This "Bug" as Beetles were often called, had been declared the perfect ‘college car’ by my father and thus a relationship was to begin that would transport me and my car through nearly four decades together.
Soon after driving the car off the lot, I christened him, Herbie, (as did most who owned VW Bugs in that era – thanks to Walt Disney' "Herbie the Love Bug" movie.) and that is how he continues to be known. He or him, but never it.
Herbie and I began our college-years journey traveling the same 37 mile stretch of Central Washington roadway weekend after weekend, from school to home and back again. Herbie took me to my first newspaper job and was with me as I moved from single-womanhood to my newlywed home.
Our journey together seemed to hit a roadblock when Joel and I moved across the state, putting Herbie, quite literally, out to pasture at a relative’s home in Eastern Washington. After we got settled, Herbie would move as well.
The years turned into decades and still my old – deteriorating– friend waited. The photo to the left is Herbie in 2003; long after the time I should have moved my trusted old friend. Restoration got underway that fall and continued for several years.
Herbie’s Kirkland homecoming was in November 2009 (the photo at the top of the post commemorates his arrival).
Saturday’s trip was to downtown Kirkland’s was to introduce Herbie to the community. He appeared in a "Cruise In" day of Kirkland's Classic Car Show; an appearance that sparked several other sentimental journeys:
There were stories of other ‘Herbie’s’; those college cars and newlywed cars of Boomer’s youth. One woman recalled a family road trip taken with four kids crammed into the backseat. Laughter. Much laughter as memories included driving without power steering, adequate heat or cooling systems and other modern-day comforts.
One man told his teenage children about his VW, while another fondly recalled that he'd driven the same green-colored Bug, another pondered ways to get his 'Bug' from a mid-western barn to Kirkland for restoration. Two ladies came by, called out to each other in Chinese and began snapping photos of ol’ Herb.
Their stories were many and diverse but all shared a common theme:
An old friend and a sentimental journey.
How about you? What's your sentimental journey?
(Click the movie link to see a Michael Bolton YouTube video musical tribute to the movie's Herbie)