The very first car I ever drove was a magical little ‘67 Bug. The year was 1981 and the poor little kafir had been driven hard and was thoroughly banged up by my older siblings. But while all my friends were saving up for and learning how to drive muscle cars, I quickly fell in love with a rusty and very oxidized red foreign economy car.
I can recall my father teaching me how to “master the clutch” on the second day of having my learner’s permit. He drove me to a hill with a steep incline, put the car in neutral and pulled the parking brake. He then got out and walked around to my window and told me to move over to the driver’s side. This was the scariest thing I had ever experienced in my fifteen years, but afterwards I was never afraid of the hills of San Francisco and never stalled the car again. I attributed this to the magic of the little Bug and that car took very good care of me through high school and college.
Somewhere along the way, that Bug had to be sold off and I’ve missed it ever since. Forty years later I have finally purchased another ‘67 Beetle, this one in white, and it is no less magical as my daily driver. So while the more modern cars fly by me on the freeway, I enjoy the meditative purr of rolling along at 65 mph while the Sapphire V AM radio croaks out some oldies from a local Mexican station.