Childhood obsession

November 1, 2009

When I was a kid, I was in love with Mustangs. Not the mustang horse, like many little girls, but the car. The ’67 Ford Mustang, to be exact.

Rumor has it that when I was a toddler, my grandma gave me a doll for my birthday. I looked at it for a moment and then cast it aside, never to be interested in it again or, technically I guess, at all. It was this same grandmother who, when charged with my care while my parents were traveling elsewhere, got me all frilled up in a dress and lacy tights. Even at age five, I knew this wasn’t me. My parents returned to collect me and, again according to rumor, I looked at my mom and said, “Help!”

No, at age five, I loved Mustangs. I had about three different ones that I remember—small, medium, and large. The large one was my pride and joy, not because of its size, but because it was—gasp—battery operated. That’s right, when I was allowed the extravagance of firing up those two D-cells, I’d swoon with joy as I watched this 18-inch beauty wear a similarly sized circle in the carpet. No radio controls here, just pure forward propulsion with front wheels that could be turned. Turn to the left, turn to the right, with no way of steering it remotely. I’d be entranced for minutes, until it was decided that the thing should be switched off so that we didn’t spend the batteries too quickly.

Mustangs weren’t the only toy cars I had. I remember a large red fire truck and a large white mail truck. I liked the mail truck because I could put things in the back of it.

Then when I was older, six or seven maybe, I discovered Hot Wheels. These were tiny cars with really spinny wheels that zipped along an orange, plastic track. Again, bells and whistles were not my parents’ style. I was allowed the basic straight track with one loop-de-loop and one hill. Track curves and the jump were just too daredevil for our household. Nevertheless, I was again afforded hours of simple occupation.

I did eventually develop the obsession with real horses at about age 10. Not flesh-and-blood beasts so much, but my imaginary stable full of the finest thoroughbreds, quarter horses, and Arabians a girl could dream up. I made incredible crayon illustrations of each horse, and on the back of the pictures, I kept detailed charts of their pedigrees. I’m sure that notebook is in my parents basement somewhere.

As for the cars and trucks, I’ll have to ask my mom whatever happened to those. I have a vague recollection that those were given up many years ago. But it was fun to remember pure, childhood fun today.

Photo came from here.

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