This post could easily get really long, but I will try to restrain myself. With that said, forgive me if this is choppy.
Mom has always wanted a 1966 Mustang. I didn’t know this until several years ago (maybe 10?) when Dad bought her one for Valentine’s Day (and Mother’s Day, and her birthday, and their anniversary, and Christmas that year). It wasn’t in great shape, but he had plans to fix it up.
That never really happened. In the garage it sat. Waiting.
Then Mom got sick, and Dad decided he was going to get the car restored. He talked it over with my brother (G), who works for Bobby Rahal Toyota. G though it was a good idea, and started talking with some of the guys there. He got estimates, and lined up all of the folks that would be needed to get that car into beautiful shape, and in working order. He went into work one day and was preparing to make the phone calls to initiate the process and his phone rang. It was an 80 year old man who said he saw a sign that said Rahal buys cars, and he wanted to know if they would buy his car.
It was a 1966 Mustang.
Yeah . . . an old man calls a Toyota dealership to see if they want a vintage FORD MUSTANG. Hmmmm……interesting.
So G told this gentleman that Rahal wouldn’t be interested in such a car, but that he would be. He told Dad all about it, and scheduled some time to visit the gentleman and his car. The car was in pretty good shape, and a deal was struck. Dad then set about selling the original car. He ended up selling it to someone we know, who is preparing to pull off a similar surprise. (I can’t wait to hear about this one!)
G’s car-fixer-upper folks got to work on the car. It took several weeks, but it was worth it. G kept sharing photos with us, and it looked like the work was coming along nicely.
Dad became focused on finding the perfect setting to reveal the car to Mom. At first his plan was for us all to meet up at a local restaurant for dinner. This particular restaurant had a large parking lot. G would drive the car to the restaurant and park it in a prominent location in the lot. When we exited the restaurant, she’d see it . . . and then Dad could tell her that it was hers.
Then we saw the weather forecast: rain. And not just rain, but RRRRRAAAAIIIINNNNN. It was going to be torrential (and it was). On to Plan B.
G asked the folks at Rahal Honda if he could use a building on their property where they photograph cars for their web site. They said yes. Dad changed dinner reservations to a restaurant local to the dealership. The plan was set.
We all met up at the Honda building at about 5:15pm on Saturday night and waited. We waited while it positively poured outside. Hearing that rain pound on a metal roof made us thankful that we had a good plan B!
Finally we heard a car outside; it was time for the surprise. The front door opened, and G went to it. Dad and G led Mom – with her eyes closed – inside. She said she had no idea where they were, since Dad had made her close her eyes several miles ago. (She gets motion sick, so he even had nausea pops for her!)
She opened her eyes and saw this:
She teared up and started hugging Dad. “My car! You fixed up my car!”
To which G said . . . “Um, yeah. Sorta.”
G told her the whole story, and she was shocked. She couldn’t believe what Dad had done, and how many people were involved to pull this off. It was awesome.
The rest of the evening was great. We had a great dinner with my Gram, my uncle and aunt, and my brother’s new girlfriend. I’ll let the rest of the photos (taken by my fabulous photographer husband) speak for themselves.
The car, outside.
The car, inside.
What an awesome night. Mom still can’t get over it. She can’t wait to be allowed to drive again so she can take it out for a spin!
Just a recommendation to all of you . . . do something special for someone you love. Now. Today. Something that will make them super happy. It doesn’t need to be a vintage Mustang, or anything big. Just make it something that is special to them. The smile on their face and the hug that they give you will show you that it was worth those few minutes, hours, or days you spent on whatever it was you did.