I wanted a Corvette almost more than anything in the world. I didn’t get one until about 1985.
I drove up to a used truck dealership in Buda, Texas that I’d been doing business with. There set a very nice 1981 Corvette. It belonged to the owners daughter. It really looked classy. I had to have it. I had just sold a prime piece of property and felt rich. Nothing was going to stop me from owning that Vette. Especially if I closed the deal before Madeline found out.
That car was brown, a slightly lighter brown than this.
I needed to immediately hit the road, so off I went to Marble Falls and on to Smithwick. Cecil Lewis was sure I’d lost my mind when I drove up in it. I made my way back to South Austin. It occurred to me about that time that perhaps my purchase may not be popular with Mrs. Lewis, when I got home. I thought about leaving it at the office for awhile, but then I decided that I just as well get it over with.
I suppose it was better received than I had figured it may be. It came with 2 sets of T tops. A stock painted set and the others were a smoked plexiglass set. It had the smokey pair on the next day when I convinced her to go for a spin. She drove. I had left the painted ones at home, figuring I’d never put them on, because the others were too cool.
She went over and hit I-35 north bound. Almost 40 years later, I still don’t have an answer as to why I decided to attempt to remove the T tops and stow them while going down the highway. I had never tried anything like that so it was a learning experience. There was no humanly possible way to hold on to it as I unfasten it.
When that baby went airborne, it went straight up. Luckily it didn’t hit any cars, but did hit the pavement and skidded over and landed in grass median and came to a stop. The look she gave me was somewhere between amazement and bewilderment. She made the next exit and circled back to pick up the badly scarred and scratched top. I pulled the other top off and we enjoyed a nice sunny afternoon ride.
The plexiglass ones got stored away and the not so nice painted ones were put on and used from then on.
I went for another short trip a few weeks later in it. Madeline drove it to the grocery store a few times if she was able to leave the boys at home with me.
When a year had passed and it was insurance renewal time, I reflected back on my 3 times I have ever ridden in or driven it. The next day we took it to a north Austin Corvette showroom and sold it. Luckily we got about the same money for it that I had paid for it.
The reason I wouldn’t drive it? The only thing harder for me to do than getting in it was getting out of it. There’s nothing that I’d ever set in that was that uncomfortable. My love affair with Corvettes was over, at least owning them. I love looking at them.
The particular color didn’t end up setting very well. That brown color, the riding discomfort and probably the T-top stunt had caused that car to fall out of favor with me pretty quickly.
One thought on “My Corvette Story”
Not nearly as well set up as you financially, my love affairs with roadsters was limited to MGs. I had two, one for a few weeks in 1970, and another for a couple years in the middle 70s. In both of them I snapped crankshafts (those engines were made for English lanes, not American interstates). I do recall that they were somewhat inconvenient to enter and exit, and the seats were not comfortable. But I felt so cool driving down the road.
Those cars required a lot of maintenance, and I did my own work, which led to more maintenance (I’m not that good at it). Life moved on, I moved out of them. Now I don’t even change oil in ANYTHING.
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