8.18.2008

Red All About It

Seeing this picture reminds me of a Sesame Street song, "One of these things is not like the others; one of these things do not belong..." This was taken on yet another trip to spend money getting Cappy's Jeep tinkered on. Even before I got the Jeep for him last Christmas, he had been ruminating about, "if we ever do get a Jeep, I'd want an older one, and of course, that would mean we'd have to adjust this or that on it, having it in the shop, getting it tweaked to our liking". He was right. The first thing that happened was that we took the "tuxedo" top off it, left her sitting in the driveway as we drove the SUV to Thibodaux to pick up a few things, came back to find that there had come a tremendous rainstorm in our absence, which then rendered the expensive radio/CD player useless, plus we had to bail out water, because the floor mats were covering the drain holes in the floor. An embarrassing and expensive lesson. In this photo, we are picking her up at a shop where they had just installed a new radio. See, she is again wearing her "tuxedo" top.
A few days before that, she was in Thibodaux, spending the night getting new tires.
We found a wonderful place in Gonzales, called SEARCHERS,which specializes in refurbishing old Jeeps, so we took her over there, where she spent a few days getting all tinkered on and in good shape. Actually, I had bought her over there in Gonzales, so the guys actually knew her, having worked on her in the past.
So, she was all set and 'good to go', looking all purdy sittin' in our driveway for a month, wearing her sharp black "tuxedo" top, while Cappy was out on the boat. Unfortunately, when he got home and fired her up, he discovered that, once again, the torrential rains, which are frequent here in South Louisiana, had gotten poured in through the windshield caulking and drowned the brand new radio, and her insides were all wet. So, we bailed and aired her all out again, had her back in the shop for new window caulking, seatbelts adjustments, and took her for several music-less drives to keep her motor purring. On one of the trips to Baton Rouge, we had talked about earlier, we picked her up a radio at a nautical store, that would withstand all kinds of weather; the kind they use on boats. Alrighty then. Cappy made an appointment to have it professionally installed, and the morning he went out to drive her to her appointment, he came in laughing, saying, "God has a sense of humor". It seems the radio had dried up and the Jeep was sitting out there happily blaring Lynard Skynyrd. Appointment canceled. While Cappy was back out on the boat, and I was on a shopping trip to Baton Rouge, I returned the nautical radio, as per his instructions.
The last time Cappy was home, he drove her back to SEARCHERS in Gonzales, where she spent the night and had a new, sturdy security trunk box installed, so that whenever we go on road trips, although it's kind of impossible to lock a Ranchero Jeep's doors, we could at least put any valuables in the trunk box, out of sight. The next day, Cappy took off her "tuxedo" top and put on her "bikini" top, then decided we should put out for a short road trip, perhaps down the long road below New Orleans along the Mississippi River, Route 23. He asked me if I'd like the doors on or off. I said that even tho' they weren't much security, I'd rather have them on. Before we left, I looked at the weather radar and became very apprehensive about going anywhere. He was so excited about going, and "pshawed" my hesitance, saying, "Naw, it'll be fine, c'mon lets GO, Cher, alon`". So, off we went, music blaring, Cappy's sporting a black dew rag, and my hair flying free. We had a wonderful time, in traffic, driving along toward New Orleans, then he noticed that there was thunder and lightening ahead, so decided we'd better turn back. Oh well, we'd just road trip in another direction, no problem. ...Problem. The dark 'red' storm I had seen on the radar was now in front of us, as well. We were surrounded. Cappy said, "Well, we'd better just go on home, then, and go another day". Uh huh. Driving back the other way in the heavy traffic, suddenly the sky got black and terribly windy, then the rain just poured down. It took to raining sideways on my side of the Jeep, the bikini top offering no protection, but lifting up in the wind to allow the torrents to fly on in, soaking us...particularly me, I thought. When we stopped at redlights, the top would buckle and drop a couple buckets of water down inside the window onto us, on either side. Then the lightening got terrible, flashing constantly; we could see it and hear it at the same time, just outside the plastic 'windows'. The wind was so bad trees were about bending over, the sky became a sickly green, the windshield wipers were going full blast, but not accomplishing much, visibility was very, very bad, and cars...the ones we could almost see, were creeping along, in the dark, wild fury of whipping rain. I just knew there had to be a tornado in the mix, somewhere, but even if there was, it would be upon us before we could see it. As far as I knew, it was lightening and raining on the inside of the Jeep as much as it was on the outside. Once, I thought I got hit in the head by lightening because I had a sudden, blinding headache. (I guess I didn't, but there was such a froth of loud confusion and water everywhere.) It was so scarey, I couldn't look anymore. I just covered my eyes and prayed. Cappy was over there laughing, having the time of his life. I was not amused. At all. The only thing that kept me from freezing to death in that water bucket was the fact that I was fuming. I was ticked. I knew we should never have gone for the ride in the first place. And now we may just never see home again. It went on for what seemed forever and got, somehow worse than ever. My senses were on overload, with no escape. So, I just prayed. Our faith teaches us to have Peace, when all around us, there is no peace. Now either that's for real, or it's not. Maybe I was delerious from the terror of the situation, but it's as if, as I was praying, I heard from somewhere wayyyyy back in my mind, "Don't you trust me, Peggy??" And in all the turmoil and rushing water flying in sideways, the question hung there;... getting louder in my ears. My eyes were 'squinched' shut, and my heart was racing, still in fear, but I mouthed the words, "Yes, I trust you....but this is crazy stuff...this was not using wisdom, coming out in this kind of weather." I looked over at Cappy, and he had his mouth wide open laughing his ol' head off. At the same time I could imagine The Lord, with his arms around both of us, His head over next to Cappy's laughing along with him in the midst of the storm. I just rolled my eyes, and said to myself, "Not funny, Lord. You are siding with Cappy". The thunder and lightening, and rain and hail kept up til we practically got home, and it was just awful, but at least I had a modicum of peace, now, that had been dropped into my spirit. As we drove into our town, the clouds parted, and a sunny, blue sky appeared, just as we had left it a couple of hours before. Like nothing had ever happened...except we were drenched, and had to bail the Jeep out again. The only thing that had dampened Cappy's mood, was that during the storm, the brand new radio had drowned. Again.
During my sleep that night, the name for the Jeep "Came" to me. Like a whisper. "Tinker Bail". Cappy has always liked the "sexy" little cartoon Tinker Bell, anyhow. When I told him that the Jeep's name should be Tinker Bail, he was, well, not smitten with the name. He said, "It doesn't speak to me". I thought I'd let him mull it over. I sat down to the computer to write a little, while he went outside to check out the Jeep, changing her top back to either her raincoat, or back to her "tuxedo". A couple of minutes he came back in and just stood there beside me, til I noticed. He was DRENCHED. He said, as he was taking the top off, a big pile of water came down on him. I asked, "Does the name 'Tinker Bail' speak to you now?" He said slowly, "yeahhhhhhppp".
So, we came up with the little drawing, of Tinker Bail with a tool belt and a pail. Now, as to the spelling, I was thinking that the word "Bail", to other readers, along the road, that it might have a connotation of someone trying to get out of jail; making bail, therefore we came up with another spelling. Sometimes cute little girls like having their names spelled differently, so we'll do that for Tinker Bayl. It's appropriate, too... saying her name sounds kinda like a Southern accent, which is just too right, given the circumstances, don'cha think?
And I think Cappy's right; God does have a good sense of humor.
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