Saturday, July 30, 2011

Shelby Cobra

This morning we awoke to a moderate breeze. The sky was clear but for a few floating vestiges of last night's monsoon.

The air was warmer than typical for the high desert. And there was calm...before the storm.

After we put on our Levi's, pulled up our socks and tied our shoes, we placed caps on our heads. nodded at each other, and headed out the door.

We got in our car and drove up Oracle Road to Mike Treece's home. This was one of Anna's birthday presents. A ride in Mike's Cobra. There exist only a few hundred originals in the world. The Cobra, manufactured for only three years in the sixties, can easily be worth over one million bucks. Mike built his from a kit.

The first thing he told me when he offered to give Anna a birthday ride was, "This thing has had problems. When it used to shift it literally jumped off the road, then fishtailed to the left."

The only time I like my cars fishtailing is when I decide they fishtail. That's besides the point. Mike knows his stuff, I hoped.

"As a matter of fact, yesterday the fuel line was leaking", he told us. He was going to take his wife out for her birthday. She never made it because they had to repair the line. After finding out about the leaky line, I made a mental note to locate the fire extinguisher in the car, which I'm sure Mike had.

After a brief tutorial on getting in the car and buckling up, Mike took Anna off on her birthday ride. She had a great time. But we all know the real reason I arranged this present. My turn came.

And what a sweet ride it was. I came to realize that car aficionados drive on another plane than the lay public. The road becomes their playground. They literally become oblivious to other cars, except when they say, "that guy thinks he's going fast." Besides that infrequent reference, they are in another world. Red lights become their friends. It gives them a chance to flex their motor muscle. Now, Mike says his Cobra is the fastest car in Tucson. Whether that's true or not, it was an adrenaline rush.

Life is fun when you can dip into another person's hobbies. People like to share their hobbies and it gives you a chance to learn something new. So, cheers to wife's birthdays! And for Mike's birthday I might get him a fire extinguisher.

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