Sunday, July 22, 2012

V3.29 - The Story of Ms. Mayberry - Part 2

Picking up where we left off, with Ms. Mayberry (a one-owner, 1955 Ford Fairlane, Town Sedan) getting banished to a garage for 10 years….Unfortunately, this was the same garage that she used for sheltering her cats. Sometime around 2001, Mr. Mittman bought the car from Mr. Harris’s daughter and took it down to his shop. Once there, the damage from the cat urine was evident. Some parts of the lower body and the chrome bumpers and guards needed attention. The most fortunate part of it was that the car’s windows were always up, so no cat ever got inside.

Mr. Mittman had the bumpers and accessory bumper guards re-chromed and the gas tank boiled out and ‘re-nued’ (which is an operation to coat the inside of the tank with epoxy). He had the front door upholstery redone because of wear around the door handles and did the bodywork necessary to be able to repaint the car in its original colors: Sea Sprite Green and Snowshoe White. Once he had the car looking good, he parked it alongside his shop and waited for the right folks to come by.

It looks like my wife and I were “the right folks” because after talking to Mr. Mittman, and hearing what his price for the car was, we decided to go back and take a closer look…and this time, we’d take the car trailer with us.

The third weekend of June, we made a quick trip back to Mt. Airy to seriously check the car out. Yes, we took the trailer with us. When we drove up to Mr. Mittman’s shop the car was sitting there running and I had to look twice at the turning fan blade to make sure…it was smooth. We got in it to take a test drive and started off down the street. At the first traffic light, I stepped on the brakes and the right front tire locked into a skid. That squealing tire sure made lots of folks sit up and take notice. Then, after taking off again, she stumbled a bit, like she might need a tune-up. We drove over to Ms. Starr’s house (the daughter of the original owner) and the brakes wouldn’t stop the car. Luckily, the parking brake worked ok, so we made it up her driveway just fine.

Ms. Starr came out and talked with us and told us of how many fond memories she had of being in the car with her folks. She even made the comment that my wife reminded her of her own mother getting out of the car. After a while, we decided we needed to get on the road, so we headed back to Mr. Mittman’s shop, to finalize the deal. Once we had completed the paperwork, we went outside to crank the car and put it on the trailer for the trip back to Jackson, TN…and the battery was dead.

Next week- part 3.
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