It was just like my first car, a ‘56 Plymouth Savoy. It was a sweet car, not a hot car, just enough to take you back to a time when metal was king and plastic was only used for radio knobs and gear shift grips.
Before I gave the guy $4,000 dollars and drove away, I showed him a picture of the day I bought a car just like it back in 1964.
“I was so proud of it,” I said. “That’s me and my sister Abigail.” As I said that a sadness came over me. Susie, my oldest sister was missing from the photo. She was dead.
“Well,” the seller said. “This old car will take ya back.”
I got in and drove away.
I rubbed my hand over the metal dash like it was a magic lamp. I turned on the radio, Rush Limbaugh! I smiled. “Well, Rush, take a trip with me, light a cigar, ease back, and forget who you are.”
“You won’t believe what the Democrats are doing in the House right now and how the Republicans are responding. What are they afraid of? There’s danger ahead. It’s like they’re heading into a fog.”
Incredibly I drove into a fog. It came out of nowhere. “There’s danger on the other side,” Limbaugh said and the radio began to crackle. I strained my eyes to see what was ahead.
“Who ever can get though this fog and see beyond is the one who can help,” Limbaugh said. “That’s where I, your humble and masterful guide through all this political fog comes in. I will show you the way as I have done so often in the past.”
Suddenly the fog cleared. The radio cleared. The station changed. It was playing Pat Boone’s April Love. I smiled, that was my sister Susie’s favorite. From a farm house two children came running toward me. Their was panic in their run and in their voices.
“Hurry, our sister,” the girl, who was older, said. “The hay mow gave way and she’s buried under it.”
I ran to the barn and tossed bales of hay aside calling for the girl. Suddenly I stopped. This is how my oldest sister, Susie, lost her life.
“Susie, Susie, we’re coming!” I cried out as bales were removed.
“How do you know her name?” the girl said.
“Just keep pulling the bales,” I said. “Better yet go up to the house and call 9-1-1.”
“What!” She said. “I’m not leaving my sister.”
“When we get her out of here she will need medical attention,” I said. “ Now go!”
“I’m not leaving my sister,” she said and continued to remove the bales.
I looked at the little boy. Suddenly that day came back to me. I stood paralyzed then just as the little boy now. It was the most helpless I had ever felt. There was nothing I could have done back then. I could hardly move a bale on my own. We didn’t get to Susie in time.
“Hey, little fella,” I said. “Can you dial the phone?”
He nodded through his fear and tears.
“Go to the house and dial 9-1-1 and tell the operator where you live and what happened. Can ya do that.”
“What is this 9-1-1 business?” the girl said sharply. “Help me!”
The boy shook his head and ran for the house.
The girl and I pulled bales away until we got to an older girl. She was listless.
“She’s dead!” the girl said.
“No,” I said. “There’s help on the way.”
From a distance a siren approached.
I made my way back to the car.
“You did a good thing today, little fella,” I said to the boy as I got back into the car.
“I couldn’t reach the phone so a guy with a cigar dialed for me. He handed me the phone and let me tell them what was going on and where we live. Then he said he hoped they weren‘t democrats.”
“Take care, little fella,” I said. Then I thought, ‘Couldn’t have been Limbaugh, he wouldn’t have let anyone talk but himself.’
“Will I see you again?” the little boy said.
“Very likely,” I said.
I got back in the car drove forward into another bank of fog. There was static on the radio. Rush Limbaugh was on again. “Whoa, folks, I don’t know where I’ve been, but I don’t remember a thing I’ve said for the last fifteen minutes. I’m sure it was brilliant. I dreamed I was in the fog. I dreamed I was in a farm house and dialed 9-1-1 for a little boy because he couldn‘t reach the phone that was hanging on the wall. It’s very strange, brilliant minds such as mine. Maybe it wasn’t the fog, maybe it was the cigar smoke. I think my subconscious is telling me that I‘m the guy who has to dial 9-1-1 for this country because…”
I smiled and changed to an oldies station. They were playing the Everly Brothers’ Wake Up Little Susie.”
I stopped and dug that picture from my bill fold. There we were, me, Abigail, and Susie.