The second grandson graduated from Ballard High School in Seattle last weekend and we went to the party for him on Saturday. It was the standard affair with some of his friends, lots of his …
The second grandson graduated from Ballard High School in Seattle last weekend and we went to the party for him on Saturday. It was the standard affair with some of his friends, lots of his parents’ friends, some family, (like BJ and me), plenty of food and good beer.
We like our grandsons a bunch and enjoy spending time with them. However, the time we are able to spend with them seems always to include other people, like their parents or their friends or whomever. The very rare yet incredibly valuable time one of us is able to spend with one of them at a time is special. I suspect many of you may relate to the experience unless the grandchildren live with you or you don’t like them!
So, last Saturday was not only the graduation party but also the Greenwood Car Show which happens to be not too far from our son’s family’s home and we arrived a couple of hours before the party started. I had hoped I could spend some time at the car show with BJ since it was a nice day, there was an Elvis impersonator (how about that?), and I was unable to make the Rakers Car Show in Port Townsend recently.
Well, BJ started expressing a less than enthusiastic attitude about going to the show so I had decided I was going to head up by myself. Then, grandson number one, who is a rising junior in college, suggested he would be interested in going with me.
This would be great fun I thought, and it was. We started with “rock star parking” about one half block from Greenwood Avenue in north Seattle.
There were hundreds of cars of all kinds for 23 blocks on Greenwood from 67th Street to 90th Street. In addition, as you might expect there were vendors of T-shirts, tacos, and almost anything else.
My grandson and I walked about 10 blocks, both sides, and found lots of opportunity to do what “car guys” do best, enhance the facts about cars owned, driven, seen, never heard of before and more. BJ drives a current Mini Cooper and I have an old friend who raced the original version in the 1960s so I get interested when I see a row of about 20 Mini Coopers from the late 1950s and early 1960s.
Mixed in amongst these old Minis were a couple Riley cars. They were about the same size from the same era and I have never heard of them before.
OK, I don’t want any emails questioning my credentials as a “car guy.”
We got into a conversation with a fellow who had an immaculate Porsche 550 Spyder from the 1950s.
Well, maybe. It was actually a Beck “replicar” meaning that the well-known Beck company had provided the molded fiberglass body. Beck typically also provides a chassis and a Subaru engine for these “replicars” as in replicated cars.
However, this car was an electric car with batteries scavenged from wrecked Teslas!
So, this car is a replica of a legendary Porsche with an electric drive train. The owner confessed that Porsche people such as I were either fascinated by the technology he implemented in the car or felt he might have committed a crime against humanity. I think I am both.
It was just grandson number one and me for a couple of hours looking at cars. Because of his age he didn’t have as many stories as I did as I pointed out a version of the first car BJ and I owned, the first car I owned, the first car I drove, and the features of various immaculate units and the attraction of old cars with patinas of rust.
Best of all it was just great for me to spend the time with him. As I said, it was special.
Love a curmudgeon and have a great week.
(Ned Luce is a retired IBM executive and Port Ludlow resident who is not afraid of Spyders, except the fake kind. Contact Ned at email@example.com.)