Before I knew you, I wanted you. I’ve longed for you since I first saw Demi Moore drive off with your cousin in St. Elmos Fire. Each day when I am in the car pool line, behind the Cadillac Escalades and the random Hummer or two, I am proud to be in my fire engine red Hyundai Santa Fe. Those cars have nothing on you and, trust me, are not loved nearly as much as I love you, my sweet, wonderful dream of an automobile.
Knowing of your mere existence, incited emotions in me that I did not know I possessed (at least not at age 13.) I begged my parents when I was a mere teen, and then again in my twenties for permission to meet and spend my life with you. My declarations of love and adoration were discarded as a passing fancy. As if someday I would turn my back on you and secure a more mature acquisition.
You are red; the color of fire, speed and the sun. On the inside you are soft and allow the sun to shine on those chilly Chicago days when I begin to lose hope of ever seeing sunlight again. Did you know that, like a lover waiting for her soulmate, I purchased a red down parka and red cowboy boots well in advance of your arrival? I knew that someday you would enter my life and we would be together until the salt started to dissolve your internal organs.
It took some cunning and conniving for us to be together. I had to dispose of the competition. It took me a few years but eventually the others just couldn’t keep up with the Chicago winters. Many complaints were lodged by those wanting to take you home. But you chose me.
Betsy! As soon as we are together, you take pains to ensure my every comfort. Like ever so slightly toasting my buns when the days are frosty with your awesome butt warmer. Or by blowing cool air on me when it is hot outside. Your windows automatically open with a bush of a button. You ensure that I have plenty of spots to place my drinks, my food, csmart phone, computer, tablet–well, you understand. Your leather seats cushion my bottom after a long and arduous workout. And regardless of what we leave inside of you daily (apple juice, an old banana or cleats) you do your best to smell fresh and clean. You take such pains to accommodate my every need. You’ve always been like that.
Aesthetically, Betsy, you remind me of a Gaudi sculpture. You are smooth, without harsh lines or edges. You are whimsical and are not afraid to show your lighter side. You rarely show the random nicks and bruises received by traversing the City of Chicago. Nor do you advertise when you have been hiking in the woods and come out covered by pine sap, bird poop and camping clutter. You just remain the same fire engine red truck with whom I fell in love.
There is talk about replacing you for a newer, faster, shiner model these days. I want to assure you that, until you are ready to quit me, I will never quit you. So, please go on consuming massive quantities of gas and oil. I know that, after all of these years, you’ve developed some expensive habits like getting poor milage in the city and on the highway. It’s to be expected. But I don’t blame you. Keep shining on my beautiful girl.
Renee, aka Windy City Momma