On the way to work this morning I passed a truck pulling a classic convertible car – top down – on a trailer. Nothing strange about the scene except for the fact that… it was raining. It looked like there’d been no effort to cover the car’s interior with a tarp or blanket or anything!
As the owner of a convertible I can relate. Having been caught more than once with the top down in a rain and, even once, a snow storm, I came to appreciate the plugs in the floorboards that can be removed to allow accumulated water to drain (good design, Jeep, good design). Over the years, however, water’s been the least of my automotive damage issues. There’s the crack in my Wrangler’s driver’s side door panel from the one time I slammed it way too hard. And the scrapes in the paint down the back corners… telltale reminders of the few times I removed the hardtop with no assistance. And the shards of neon green plastic wedged into the material wrapping the roll/sound bar. Those are from my kayak, the one I violently shove over the rollbar to get it on top of the Jeep for transport. There are dents in the hood from too much climbing around on the thing (it IS a jungle gym on wheels, you know), scuffs on the grille from tie-downs secured in the wrong place, and a dent in the removable full-steel door where I leaned it against the furnace.
We all have scars and our vehicles are no different. Each dent and ding, scuff and scratch is evidence of an experience and tells a story. And some auto-injuries, like the rain-soaked interior of the classic convertible that started this tale, even teach a lesson. I bet, next time he goes to haul his hot-rod, that guy’ll be better prepared.