Glancing out the kitchen window this morning as I made my tea, it struck me yet again — that ‘Greenie’ was gone. Yes, really and unequivocally gone – just like the man who drove it. That well-used green Nissan racked up more than 250,000 miles on its trek to clients and office each week. But seeing the suddenly inert car in my driveway, appearing like a ghostly mirage without its driver, would take my breath away. When one of my son-in-laws found someone who needed interim wheels, the little car seemed the perfect answer. It quietly, unceremoniously made its exit, heading for a new owner and routes unknown.
How the heck then, can I still be stupefyingly surprised, in moments like this morning, that my husband’s trusty green chariot is AWOL?
I can still envision Greenie pulling into the cul de sac in front of our house, a comfortable reminder that the man I loved was home. I miss seeing that car slowly pull out of the driveway, idling in front of the house until its owner and I waved goodbye, an ‘us’ tradition. I miss seeing that car roll back in at night, allowing me to breathe easier knowing my man was safely home again. That car was an extension of him in so many ways.
Constantly losing his glasses, my absent minded PR man would have been amazed to see the 5 pairs I found when I cleaned out the car before releasing it to the new owner. I groaned when I opened the trunk that held his signature potpourri of junk and valuables, tossed in with intent on temporary lodging but ending up as permanent storage. I found bits of metal gutter samples from his client, wall hangings from his office that somehow never got re-hung, bags from surprise gifts he’d bring the grandkids and yes, the tell-tale fast food wrappers from treats he promised to give up.
Calling the car’s interior a masterpiece of disarray would be a kind description for an area more accurately dubbed a poster child for Hazmat. Of course, the many dings, scrapes, and accidents this car endured earned my husband a nickname of ‘Crash’ — and caused me many a worried moment. I would constantly fear the worst, that either the cell phone, constantly held to his ear, or absent-mindedness would cause an event worse than all the near-misses. Who could have known the incident that would remove him from my life would have nothing at all to do with any of that worry?
Good old Greenie somehow didn’t mind being driven to near deconstruction, racking up more miles than lesser cars could tolerate. No matter the day, it still always carried my man safely home to me. Each time I see its siblings on the road, dead ringers for ol’ Greenie, my heart catches. . .
. . . as Kermit always said, it’s not easy being green.