Last Monday my world changed a bit. It truly effected me and gave me an emotional week filled with love and support from those around me. Hemi decided to retire. Now for those of you that don’t know, Hemi is my truck and we have been partners in crime for 14 years this week. My history with my truck is a bit more beyond our years together so here is a bittersweet sendoff to one of my best friends.
Let’s go way back to June of 2005, Hemi was my last gift from my Grandparents before my Grandmother passed away a week later. I was only 15 years old and Hemi only had 70 miles on him. From there our adventures started when my world was turned upside down. I was really close to my Grandparents and losing them within 6 months of each other was very difficult. Hemi was my Grandpa’s last truck as he used to work for Chrysler Proving Grounds and got a new one every two years, he had sat in a garage for months before I took him over. Just a girl and her truck, naturally we went everywhere together. Hemi came with me to college, Disney and numerous more adventures. I have known for quite some time he was getting up there in age, and because of that he hadn’t really left my sweet town of Chelsea for a while.
The timing for the events on Monday were perfectly laid out in a puzzle only God and Hemi could have planned up for me. I hadn’t been backing Hemi in for a while at work because of all of the cars in the morning… I backed him in. I normally don’t park front and center as we are a store and try to park off to the side for customers, spots were limited so I parked front and center of the door. Majority of my days are spent in the back working so I don’t see the front windows… I had to cover the front that day so I was in the front of the store helping a customer.
Hemi started smoking. He hadn’t even been driven for 5 hours.
At first I thought it was odd that someone was smoking in front of my truck so I got a bit closer… as I was figuring out that the smoke was coming from Hemi it got bigger and black. I turned to my boss who happened to come in front at that moment and we went running towards my truck. As we were running I told Hemi that that was enough and he needed to stop. As I was figuring out what to do next we heard a loud HISS and a POP! That was it, the fire was out.
Naturally my warrior mode kicked in, I sprung to action and Hemi had a one way ride via AAA to the dealership across town within 30 minutes. I never opened the hood, I never started him. I actually only took a couple things out of my passenger seat and that was it. The dealership was a bit busy and didn’t get to look at Hemi for a couple days.
Meanwhile Monday night after work I went and said goodnight to my beloved Truck. I was filled with gratitude all day long and couldn’t wait to thank him for always keeping me safe. My golden metal protector was telling me he needed to retire and I needed to get the hint. Although I still didn’t know what Hemi’s fate was I stopped by my dream car on my way home. I was just going to peak in the window and get a sense of pricing… I didn’t even think they were open. I’ve never even test drove it. But I had been wanting this car since I was 6…
I bought my dream car… A Jeep Wrangler. Again, everything fell into place. The jeep had everything and more than I ever wanted when I built it online, it was loaded. I’ve always wanted white, hardcover and other small details inside. This one had it all. I purposely never test drove it, I always knew it would be mine someday. Apparently this was the day. Yes, I was tear filled with thoughts on the fate of my truck but I just felt like home once I was inside. I didn’t make a rash decision at the dealership, in fact I waited until I spoke with my family and 10 minutes before they closed I made the call. Thursday I officially bought a vehicle for the first time and brought this new baby home. #adulting
When I stopped by to see Hemi on Tuesday I finally got to speak with the mechanic team, or at least some of them. The guy asked me how I stopped the fire so fast? I told him I didn’t, I told Hemi to stop smoking. Then that was it. The guy just looked at me and said that they don’t do that, normally they burn all the way down to the frame. I replied that he didn’t know my truck, Hemi’s not normal. He took me to see Hemi and showed me the engine. The air purifier had melted onto electrical wires and other parts, ruining them in its wake. I felt even more sound about my new jeep decision and thanked Hemi with all of my heart before I left again.
I’ve taken the Jeep to meet Hemi and had him pass down the torch of being one of my protectors. After all, Hemi has become a master at it. Hemi is still at the dealer waiting on parts, because yes he is getting fixed. It’s just going to take a bit of time not to mention we still don’t know what started the fire. My Dad has taken over Hemi and will use him for gardening around the house for the truck’s retirement. (mulching, dirt etc.) Hemi will have a spot of honor in the driveway as he still has a lot of life left in him, he’s just not up for big adventures with me anymore. Those he’s passed onto the Wrangler, who is taking over for my next stages in life.
My weekend has been filled with moving into my new white shiny protector, fun rides with the top off and getting an introduction into a secret Wrangler society I actually knew nothing about. But I’m getting the hang of it y’all! *Wrangler Wave* Tucker has filled the jeep with plenty of nose art, my Mamaw has christened it with Dairy Queen and I have stopped at Starbucks twice. It’s officially a member of the family and I couldn’t be happier! I have yet to learn the Jeep’s new name but it will come y’all… after all, we’re just getting to know each other.