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Hot Rod Island-Chapter 5: The Barn Find Hunter.

“Wanna drive around and look at old Volkswagen buses? I know where most of them are on the island!”

That was her idea of a first date.

I got to know that she didn’t really like the Type 1 split window bus, nor was she a huge fan of the bay window variety from the late 60s. She preferred the 80s boxy Vanagon. She also stated that she loved the little VW Rabbit pickup truck but had never seen one in person. “I hope I get to own one someday,” she said. “I’m sure you will,” I retorted.

It was a fun first date. Little did I know that a couple of months later the two of us would be blasting across the American Midwest in a ‘73 Dodge station wagon!

Blaire (not to be confused with the Blair from chapter 3 of Hot Rod Island) is a fellow public health student at Cape Breton University but has a penchant for old vehicles, especially Volkswagens, psychedelic art, and furry felines. The embodiment of the modern hippie, and wise beyond her years, I’m sure she has lived multiple lives.

Reincarnation, a concept that is not usually acknowledged by the Abrahamic religions of the world, is considered a common truth in the average Hindu or Buddhist household. I too, am a firm believer that we live, die, and are then born again. Maybe not all our lives are human. I’m sure a lot of readers might call me crazy at this point. Maybe I am. But the main question is, how is all this related to the love we have for mechanical transport?

I think these past lives rub off, daub the soul. These folk have a different twinkle in their eyes. Certain traits, characteristics, and likes/ desires are carried over. Passion is rooted in these otherworldly energies. I think that’s from where Blaire gets her love for old stuff.

After we had been together for a few months, Blaire decided that we were going hiking in the woods one day. She “want[ed] to show me something.”  I shall never forget when automotive carcasses started appearing out of the foliage in the woods of the Third. True forest finds, the car hoards that Blaire loves to discover are the stuff that any self-respecting barn-find hunter would sacrifice their apricots of Aphrodite for. And this is one of the Thirds best-kept automotive secrets.

We hunt every chance we get for these cars of the wild. It’s a pleasure walking in the woods and photographing the derelict classic automobiles.

“They all once graced the shiny floors of a showroom!” Blaire exclaims. We want to drag so many from their resting places and bring them back to life. “We are gonna need a huge property,” Blaire says, and I agree. Our motto is ‘Automotive recycling is one of the best ways to stay eco-friendly!’

Blaire is still hunting around to find that VW Rabbit pickup, but I believe we might have found a Volkswagen bus that I’d like to resurrect. “I still need the Westfalia Vanagon though,” Blaire says as we dust off our jeans heading out of the woods, but not before coming across a 1970 Plymouth Fury 3 lying on its back. As usual, I shake my head in disbelief. ‘Where else would I have a girlfriend like Blaire? but on Hot Rod Island’.  

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