Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Vintage VW Beetle and Sister #3

We moved to Alabama in 1968, a move that completely traumatized all of us and caused us to become serial ax murderers, heroin addicts, Communists and sex fiends.  OK, well, at least the first one is COMPLETELY false.  And I never ever not once no never got addicted to heroin.  Because you can't get addicted if you don't stick a needle in your arm.  I'm pretty sure about that.  Kinda sorta.

(We will now leave that place and proceed with the post because I'm pretty sure I'm wrong and I don't like to admit I'm wrong).

My father was transferred from the bucolic wonderland of Lafayette, CA (just across the bay from San Francisco) to his company headquarters in Birmingham, AL.  Two of my sisters begged our parents to let them be adopted by families still living in Lafayette, which Mom and Dad thought about and then decided not to go with the idea since they'd lose two tax deductions.  Just kidding, Sally and Susie. 

However, by 1970 we had totally adopted the hippie look.  Well, except for Mom.  She just went for 70's sexy and succeeded brilliantly.  Mom was 44 in this photo!  Whatta hottie!
(That's our house behind her--it was a huge log cabin with two stone fireplaces and wagon wheel chandeliers.  Mom tastefully decorated it in the lovely 70's colonial style with lots of ugly heavy dark wood.  Yuck.  I do wish she'd hung on to the milkglass hobnail lamps, though).

I'd been accepted at Samford University in Birmingham, a nice private Baptist college that I could attend while living at home.  I needed a car and found what might have been the ORIGINAL VW Beetle.  It was so old that for awhile we assumed it was Hitler's "fun" car for when he wasn't tooling around in limos.  Note: the car was a bit younger than that but was definitely made before 1953--I did some research and learned the split back window was eliminated in that year.  Here's me in the VW with the requisite Flower Power stick-ons and two smushed fenders (I'd occasionally drive it after drinking cough medicine recreationally and you know what that does to your sense of space and direction?  You don't?  Well, it makes you think you're NOT scraping along a guardrail when actually, you are).
I think we sold the car after we'd had it about three or four years, but I'm sure it's still being used as a taxi somewhere in South America.

Susie is the #3 sister.  You may remember her from an earlier post and a photo taken of us on the day in San Francisco that I was thinner than she was.  That's her talking to me in the above photo, and this is her cute self astride the VW, looking ever so hippie chic with all that hair, embroidered bell bottoms and wide leather belt. 

Susie is the mother of Seanbo and Tinkiepoo the Clown AND became a Grandma in December--Seanbo grew up, married the beautiful Beth and they begat Iain.  However, the young girl sitting on the VW in 1971 still looks pretty much the same in 2010, so referring to her as Grandma is just weird. 

Now, if it were ME with a grandchild, you'd be thinking, "Hmmm, I wonder if Granny here came over from Germany along with that brand new VW?    And you know, you'd be just about right, year-wise.


  1. Oh just wonderful! I love car stories. My first car was a VW Cabriolet named Bettie...although I would have sold my soul for a bug!

  2. Thanks for my first laugh of the day!! I always wanted a VW bug!!

  3. Ha ha love the V-dub...

    I think I was 26 before I got my first car lol... Dad wouldn't allow it before then. And by then, I was far too responsible to drink cough syrup or use guard rails as road guides *sigh*

    Now be sure and get a starburst clock of your own so we can see it! =D

  4. I never could learn to drive that darn car - to this DAY, I can't drive a straight shift!! (I'm pretty sure that old VW ruined it for me......)I can almost still remember how that car smelled!! (Not bad....justlike OLD leather.) Mom sure was pretty....

  5. You are right... grandma is just not quite fitting. So she is Iain's Zsu-Zsu!

  6. Who knew cough syrup lead to guard rail crash-us? It's not fair! I'm 44 and I am no where near sexy like your mom! I think you'd call my style "frumpy comfy"!

  7. Love that Bug and the story behind it haha! My first car was a 61' Bug.. tons of fun!

  8. Loved this!! We had an original baby blue VW bug and loved it so!!! Who knows what happened to it...oh thats right, it became a fancy beetle with a flower holder (-:

  9. Wow...Bama sure was beautiful. And how about my adorable hippie mom?! So Cute!!! That car was something. You look great behind the wheel!

  10. Too funny! Loved every word...

    Liz (aka Ninny)

  11. This cracked me up - we are three sisters in our family, and we have all had VW's, and grew up with them. My first car was a '67 Bug - and it didn't have any "smushed" fenders when I got it, but after I'd driven it for awhile - it did. Gee, wonder how that happened...?

  12. hmmmm.........there is DEFINITELY some kind of connection between VW Beetles and Bloggers!!! Weird!