This weekend, I went up the Carlisle truck show, and I packed for it like I was doing an extended tour of duty with the French Foreign Legion. I’d been up there with my old Scout back in 1998 or so and the two things I remember about it were that it was blisteringly hot and that I was overwhelmed by the amount of people, vehicles, and stuff for sale. So I packed extra oil, coolant, transmission fluid, water, and gas. We bolted the soft top back on and left it down in case of rain, put the bikini top up, and packed chairs, a cooler, two toolboxes, the spare tire, and fresh coffee.
Friday evening Brian H. stopped over to help me get Peer Pressure put back together, and once again I wouldn’t have been able to get it done without him. In about two hours we got all three seats, the Tuffy console, and the roll bar back in place along with a bunch of smaller assorted stuff. I’m OK with the bed liner but not thrilled with the results. I think because it sat for three years some of the chemicals were going bad, so the mixture didn’t come together the way it should have. I also had some issues dialing in the pressure properly so some of the coverage looks like snot. But Saturday morning we were ready to roll bright and early, and the truck ran like a top.
The ride up was uneventful and strange–because we didn’t see one other show-going truck until we got into the town limits. Years ago I was passing all kinds of modified and antique vehicles, either there to show or to visit. This time there were none. It got to the point where Brian and I thought we’d come on the wrong weekend.
Once we got in the fairgrounds, the view changed: trucks as far as the eye could see. And mostly newer stock. Lots of late-model pickups with bolted-on accessories like tires and lifts and air dams and lights–lots of lights. Rows of lowered mini trucks (Yeah, I guess that’s still a thing; I figured it died out decades ago) sprinkled with the odd antique. There was no rhyme or reason to the organization other than a few club groups here and there, so the makes were in random order. Pennsylvania is a mecca for antique cars of all shades, more so than Maryland in my opinion. Every time we drive through we’ll see some kind of pretty muscle car or hot rod out for a cruise. Apparently there aren’t a lot of antique trucks up there, or they’re boycotting the show for some reason, because the pickings were slim.
Our club showing was excellent, however. They set up a tent toward the grandstand and we had 25 trucks lined up fender to fender along one row, so you knew where the Internationals were. Lots of people would walk down the row and stop until someone older in the group would say, “Hey lookit them Scouts!” and launch into an explanation of what they were.
We met up with Brian T. and walked the grounds for a while. My favorite section had to be, without a doubt, the customized van area, where several survivors of the brutal 70’s were parked in all their airbrushed metalflake glory. After some lunch we wandered back and hung out with the club folks, where I picked up my new steering wheel. Brian and I sat down and talked quietly over some beers; we were both overstimulated by the people and sights and needed some quiet time to recharge, which worked out really well.
I drove Brian H. back to his place and peeked in at the engine he’s selling me; we have to hump it from his back shed around to the front of his house, get it onto a truck, and up to my place. Then we have to get it back off, into the garage, and up on the stand. I have no idea how the second half of this procedure is going to happen yet.
The girls got back from a birthday party about the same time I did, which was perfect, because I got to help get Finn into bed and relax a little with Jen before we all fell asleep.
Sunday I spent a good bit of the day catching up with yardwork and cleaning I’ve neglected for the past two weeks; it felt good to get the shaggy lawn and hedge trimmed and vacuum the floors and put things away where they belong. It was better still to spend time with the girls. We capped a glorious sunny day off with a walk around the neighborhood, following Finn on her bicycle as she pedaled up and down hills, sparkly tassels blowing in the breeze.