Our third son has been in the southeast this summer, building a house. Bad time to try to get into the building business, I suppose, although if he can make it now, he can make it any time. Anyway, he's been driving a 1995 Caddy that I found for $2000. It's been a trouble free car for 3 years (other than the water pump failure about a year ago), so I really am happy with it. But, since he's always been fascinated by building, and this is clearly what he intends to do, without bothering to finish his college degree, when a friend of mine called and said he was standing in front of a 1998 Chevy extended cab pickup for $2500, and it was Dan Green, I told him to snag it!
Earlier this week, Dan flew home to get his new truck. He brought a present for Thor: a biiiigggg bone. Now, while Thor can haul around the super big rawhide bones, he can't chew them all that well. So, my boys being resourceful, they sawed it in half. And look how happy Thor is!
I still have the Chevette I bought for my 18th birthday, 5 months before I got married. I paid under $4000 for it, it only has 39,000 original miles on it now, and it always runs. Besides, it wasn't ever worth anything for resale, so I just kept it stored in a garage. When we sold that building last year, the Chevette came back here. And it spent the winter and spring under a cover. All of my boys have been hounding me for years to teach them to drive a stick, so, given that I doubt Dan will be back except at holidays, I took him out Friday afternoon to drive around our yard in the Chevette. First, a quick demo of "how it's done"; pay attention to the sound of the engine, the whole thing. I taught him the gear pattern, how to use the hand brake, and, after he'd become sassy in thinking this was easy, I put him on a very small hill in the driveway, and told him to start from a dead stop. Well, 20 or 30 tries later, he got it up the hill, parked it, and declared, "No wonder they stopped selling these things! That's way too much work for driving!" But at least now I know he can drive a standard transmission if he must; my work here is closer to done.
The last night before Dan drove back to the apartment he shares with his brother, an investment banker, we had lemon chicken, lemon rice and sauteed zucchini and summer squash. This is really very easy: slice one (or more) each zucchini and summer squash fairly thin. Melt 1/2 stick butter in a skillet, grind in plenty of fresh pepper, and saute for about 3 to 5 minutes. This dinner served with spinach salad caused Dan to declare, "I really need to learn to cook!" That's about as good a compliment as a Mom gets.
And, of course, what kind of mother would I be if I hadn't set him on the road with plenty of provisions for himself and the brother with whom he rooms? 2 cranberry bread, 3 banana bread, one devil's food cake with buttercream frosting and one yellow cake with chocolate peppermint frosting should keep them happy until at least Tuesday....I hope!