A Little Bit Western


Like a Rock

May 6, 2014

Around our place, we pride ourselves upon being thrifty, even bordering on frugal. If you saw our trusty ranch pick-up truck, I think that would be apparent. To get every last penny’s worth out of your old work truck, you can’t be too fussy. If they budge an inch, you better be willing to drive it a kilometer. Or one hundred. Times a thousand. We might not always have the classiest ride, but hey, if it gets us from Point A to Point B, that’s all that really matters, right? Plus every mile we save on our “good” trucks is pretty nice too.

For better or for worse, we favor one particular brand of vehicle on our ranch to get the job done. Generally, this brand performs well under stress, and my only complaint is that at around 350,000 km the doors and end gates can get a little tough to open. So you adapt, roll down the window if you want to enter or exit the motor vehicle, and go about your business. And who really needs an end gat anyway, they can be sort of pesky at times.

Our old ¾ tonne has respectfully achieved retirement status. Once my Other Half’s pride and joy, the ‘98 had lived a full life at its previous owner’s ranch before it even came into our possession. We had eleven good years together. It has chased cows, been roped out of, pounded thousands of posts, and been stuck a time or two. There have been run-ins with deer, gophers, badgers, raccoons, a mule with sharp teeth, and a memorable incident involving a duck and a truck cab full of feathers. The ’98 has functioned as the welding truck, the fuel truck, the maintenance truck and it even had a brief stint as a furniture hauler when it hauled all of my possessions home from university. In the stock trailer. The old single-cab even spent time on the show circuit, hauling cattle to Agribition and Fall Fair for a few years.

In the end, it wasn’t at all unusual to see us pull a “Dukes of Hazzard” move and crawl into the ’98 via the side window. You didn’t do this because you thought you looked cool, but because the door handle was stuck and it was a necessity. There was kind of a trick to starting the old truck and you couldn’t guarantee that it would cooperate just when you needed it to. Ironically, our beloved Chevy started to take its calling seriously and was behaving “like a rock” a bit too literally for our liking.

The time had come for an upgrade. After a very brief shopping trip, we welcomed a new addition to our vehicular family. This new-to-us truck, dubbed the Green Giant, is a real beauty and it features bench seating for six, leather interior, power windows and locks. And a pretty epic tape deck. It was manufactured when I was thirteen.

The children are so excited, especially because the “new” truck yields “prizes” scattered throughout which so far have included a dime, two quarters, a roll of scotch tape, and a crumpled up receipt. I’m so excited because this means I won’t be packing around the portable welder in my truck any longer. And my Other Half is so excited because the price was right and the wheels seem to go around.

There is no telling what adventures The Green Giant will see in the rest of its lifetime but I hope it’s up to the challenge. This new kid on the block has an awful lot to live up to especially since we stepped a bit outside of our brand comfort zone with this purchase. But with claims that this variety of truck isn’t short on “guts” or “glory,” you can be sure that we will put its claim of grabbing “life by the horns” to the test.

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