My name is Rebecca Maindonald. I live in Austin Texas with my husband Sam. This is me with GiGi, my 1967 beetle. I purchased her for my 31st birthday in January. GiGi comes from a line of ladies who owned and loved her and put some interesting feminine touches in over the years. What sold me on the car was the pink floral upholstery that the previous owner had put in.
I first got bit by the bug when I was 16 years old. My mom and I were driving home one day and we passed by our local greasy VW workshop and saw a bright yellow ’74 super beetle sitting out front for sale. We both fell head over heels in love with it, and after much convincing of my dad that night, we went and bought it the next day. I called that one Becs Bug and drove it religiously as my first car for about 4 years. As cute as it was, that car was a serious lemon. The reverse gear would regularly fail, forcing me to always park in a way that I could pull straight out from. No amount of idle or carb adjustment would make it run without stalling at stoplights in the winter. I’m convinced I was the most skillful 16-year old driver out there with the number of maneuvers I had to master to drive the thing.
My dad was a real worry-wort, and after four years of nail biting, huffing and puffing, and constant grumbling about ‘that bug’ he convinced me to sell it and buy something more reliable-a Chevy Cavalier. It was a mixture of sadness and relief when I watched it drive off with its new owners-a young couple who were going on a cross country road trip. They were going to tow it behind their RV and use it to drive around the town they stopped in. I never heard how they got on!
Flash forward to present day, and bugs had been on my mind for years. My husband and I were living in England where we couldn’t afford to own a car. My husband promised me that when we moved back to Austin, he would buy me a bug. After lots of research, I had my heart set on a ’67 as in my humble opinion, it was the zenith year for Volkswagens. Lots of searching later, I fell in love with GiGi.
She’s an absolute blast to drive, and gratefully, doesn’t have any problems of my old bug. It’s been an adjustment though, getting used to these wonderful old cars. She is my daily driver, and my husband and I are slowly teaching ourselves to work on her. When I took her into the VW mechanic for a check over, he was astounded at the number of original mechanical parts (gulp!) including a completely original electrics system.
For me, Volkswagens are a way of life, and I am determined to keep this car a part of my life, no matter what. My project for this summer is to install 3-point seat belts in the front and lap belts in the back. We’re having a baby in November, so I’ll be researching what car seats fit into a beetle. I want to raise my children to appreciate these cars and learn to work on them and maintain them. Maybe one day they’ll want to drive GiGi as their own.
I’ll also be looking into replacing/updating the electrical system at some point soon, but that’s a job that Sam and I will have to do together after LOTS of research.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my story-and many thanks to Eric for this wonderful website. Keep the dream alive!!
Thanks, Rebecca, for sharing your ’67 with 1967beetle.com.