Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Motoring Into November

Pink Muhly Grass in my community

 It's only Wednesday as I begin the composition of this post. While my habit is to blog closer to the weekend, I am eager to welcome November and close the pages of my October calendar. It isn't that the last month was bad for us, but I quickly tire of Halloween's influence. Welcome November -- a time to embrace gratitude!

from our early days together

Those who have been following my blogs for the past few years have seen this picture. Terri D of the blog, Your Friend From Florida, came up to see us and snapped this picture of us with Gary's 2002 Ford Thunderbird. He acquired the car the same week as our first date and often said "had to get the car to get the girl!" While that wasn't exactly true, it certainly didn't hurt as he was winning my heart. 

We thoroughly enjoyed this sporty little number. One of my earliest memories was when we loaded the CD player with Rock 'n Roll oldies and sang together at the top of our lungs as we sailed down the highway in the 'Bird to have lunch at Cedar Key. 

us with the 'Bird at the dealership;
our last photo with it

But as time passed we realized we could really use a truck, a small one, but a truck nonetheless, for hauling bark mulch, sod, and other messy cargo from time to time. 

me with 'my' truck

We traded in the sport car for a 2023 Ford Maverick in "alto blue." A couple of months ago we ordered a 2024 Maverick in "Hot Pepper Red," but with the UAW strike and how long it takes for a truck on order to process (maybe by Christmas or later), we opted to get this one instead. 

ringing the sale bell at the Ford dealership

I love it. It doesn't feel like a truck because it's smaller and driving it feels like the three Ford Escapes I've owned in the past. Although it was a shared expense, Gary claims I've taken it over as mine. Well, whatever, it's a dream to drive and I intend to enjoy it as much as possible. 

our garage

Fitting it into the garage with the Toyota is not hard, maybe even easier than it was with the T-Bird. There is a certain amount of rearranging that has to be done to accommodate our bicycles.

the dash of the Maverick

The single biggest adjustment we are having to make is that the gear shift is not on a stick at all but is that black round button on the left side of the console. We twist that button from Park, to Reverse, to Drive, to Neutral. Isn't that wild?!

lunch on the Withlacoochee River

We took the truck over to Dunnellon for lunch. Gary drove it to The Blue Gator, and I drove it home. The drive was beautiful on a weekday when traffic was light. Our burgers were great, and as I've said many times, I love dining on the water. There is lots of opportunity for that around here.

Gary's bicycle

I have to tell you about the "trick" we experienced on Halloween... as we rolled off our driveway for our usual morning bike ride, Gary's rear tire was immediately punctured with a rusty screw in the street. At first we both thought he had crushed an acorn from the many Live Oak trees that are dropping them right now. But the curious sound was very rhythmic and persistent. Finally just a couple of blocks from home we stopped to examine the tire. 

the culprit

Blessedly, we were not far from home and the tire held its air long enough to peddle back without having to walk the bike. I assumed we would be loading the bike into the back of the new truck and heading to a repair shop. But I learned something I had not known before.

tire in a box

Did you know you can buy a tire in a box, bring it home, unfold the thing and install it yourself? And did you know you can do the same thing with the inner tube?

both tire and tube from Walmart

We thought we'd find tires hanging on a rack, arranged according to size. No, they didn't have them, but when Gary saw them in boxes on the shelf, he did not hesitate to grab what we needed and said he could fix it himself.

installing the tire from a box

I have run out of fingers and toes as I try to tally all the handy-man things Gary has done for me/us in the couple of years I've known him. He not only fixed it in short order, but saved us significant money from what a bike shop would have charged us.

a reflective morning on the lanai

This concludes my post for today. Since I'm writing earlier in the week than I usually do, I haven't as many adventures to report. Tomorrow morning we expect to wake up to a low temperature in the mid forties, so that will take us into sweaters and socks, even long pants. I'm ready for that adventure after our long hot summer.

There is a time for everything,

and a season for every activity under the heavens...

Ecclesiastes 3:1

Until next time, grace and peace.


  1. I love the new truck! It's so cute! (Can you say that about a truck?) The car was a beauty and leaves you with great memories - but now Gary got the girl so you can move on to a vehicle that gets things done. :)
    It's a blessing to have a husband who knows how to fix things!

  2. Such a cute truck and just the right size. Enjoy!

  3. Gary really is Mr. Fix-It, Barbara, and that's a great thing! I do love your new truck, although the T-bird was very spiffy. I'm not in the market for a new set of wheels, but when I am, I think I'll go for a small truck, too.
    Blessings, and happy November!

  4. A tire in a box! To quote my grandmother..."Well, I never"! Haha! That's so neat to know that's an option now. I love your new truck. My mom has a car with that new button gear shift thing and it always throws me for a loop when I drive her car on occasion.


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