The other morning, Isla and I drove to Fred Meyer’s to get coffee and donuts. This is our family’s Sunday ritual, except usually it’s Danny and Isla. Danny was working on my Nissan that weekend so when I said I would drive, I knew I would have to take his car. Me and his car have a history, I’ll tell you about it in a minute.
I got Isla all buckled in, turned it on (it sounds a little like King Kong tearing through a city…but louder) and then started to back up when Isla shouted (over the sound of the exhaust) from the backseat, “Mom! Mom! When you get out on the road you have to really let it go! Let it go and drive fast, Mom!” She’s four. I’m scared.
But the thing is, I can’t let her think that only dads know how to drive fast, so we backed out, I put it in 1st gear and floored it. Danny asked me when we got back why I was tearing out of here so fast, he can hear the car from bed. I can also hear him coming home from work every night when he is two blocks away. That’s how I know to put dinner on the table.
So, now that my baby knows her mom can “really let it go,” I can safely go back to hauling around 16 kids in my truck, wishing it was a minivan, and still have some cred. The thing is though, every once in a while I end up driving Danny’s car. It’s a mustang. It’s red. It about ½ inch off the ground. Basically it’s a matchbox car.
One of the very first times I ever drove it was about 8 months ago. Danny must have been working on my truck because that’s usually the only time I drive it. I know it was a Saturday and I was going to work because I picked up my friend and co-worker Sarah on the way. By the time I had gotten to her house I had sort of forgotten I was in Barbie Ken’s car. I saw her across the street and she squinted at the red mustang that was roaring up to her, before she realized it was me and started cracking up. I pulled up, she hopped in and we.couldn’t.stop. I almost peed my pants laughing so hard at the two of us (one who doesn’t drive at all and the other that drives a 17 year old truck), at 6:30am, cruising through small town Edmonds in a red hot mustang.
We went to work, got busy, and I forgot again, until it was time to go home. We walked out to the car and did the weird sort-of-fall-into-the-seat thing you have to do in a car that is lowered to the floor. I had parked near the entrance of our work and our last two customers we had served were just leaving the shop. It was a guy about our age and his wife. We were still laughing when I put in the clutch and started the engine. The man, who was about 10 feet in front of us just stepping off the curb, jumped, squinted in the front window, saw it was us and yelled, “Holy Sh*t!”
I leaned out the window, “Sorry, it’s my husband’s car!”
I’m pretty sure they have a whole new idea of who Sarah and I are. And it’s totally inaccurate. But maybe, just maybe, they’ll think like my four-year-old and know that we can really “let it go”. Not a bad thing.