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The Ole Beige Bomb
by Anne McKee


At one time my family and I were the proud owners of the ole beige bomb. A bomb, you ask? Yes, but “our bomb”. . . get comfortable and let me tell you all about it.

We endearingly called the pitiful old ragged, pukey-beigey-colored truck a bomb, thinking even if a bomb went off inside of the wreck it wouldn’t look any worse for it -- and maybe even look better. So, after a period of time, we just shortened the name to “Bomb.”

We came across the “Bomb” sitting along side Highway 45 South one day with a for-sale-by-owner sign plopped on top of its slightly cracked windshield. My husband pulled over to the side of the road and started toward the “pile of junk,” and I said, “What are you doing?” He replied, as he hurried along, you know, just in case someone else might buy the thing right out from under him, “You just can’t wear these old trucks out.” And, good grief, he even sounded excited! Well, the deal was concluded within a wink of the eye, (the wink of the seller’s eye, I thought) and we managed to get the “lemon” home. My husband parked it proudly right there in the front drive for all to see. I thought he should slip it behind the fence, way on the other side of the barn . . . out of sight. But, oh no, so the front drive it was, and we began our life with the Beige Bomb.

First, the Bomb was given a jam-up good clean-up -- much needed, I might add; then was added a new set of tires, an oil change, and the Bomb was ready to rock and roll, or so we thought.

We must have given the Bomb a-real-pretty-look, because by the next morning the Bomb was gone! Yes, someone had stolen our little beige jewel! We were perplexed! Why would someone want this ole junker? But before we could figure it out the Bomb was returned! That’s right, by the following morning the Bomb was sitting in the front drive, on full display, in its special spot. You know, that really hurt our feelings. Steal your truck, and then bring it back? That’s a low blow to anyone, don’t you think?

We never did know the true story on the truck theft, but I think that experience made us appreciate the ole Bomb a little more. We did, sort of, miss it the 24 hours is was gone.

Now, we had our original, what we called our Sunday Truck, a real black beauty, then we had our Traveling Van, a nice white, fully loaded, way to travel, plus the Bomb; yes, now we were complete in every traveling mode.

We had figured the Bomb would come in handy for such events as going to the garbage dump, hauling lawn mowers to the shop, taking our big dog, Lady Bird, to the Vet, although she wound up sitting up front most of the time, or trips to the Coop nursery loaded down with trees, bushes, flower plants and fertilizer, and we were correct. The Bomb was a plus for all of these needs. But it was what we didn’t figure on that saved the McKee family, and in more ways than one. Listen up as I shout the Bomb’s praises!

Yes, I shout for all to hear my love for the Bomb, the ragged -pukey-beigey Bomb!

It was August 2005, yes, the month of Katrina, when the Bomb came into its own time. The Bomb hauled ice and gas for our family and neighbors. The Bomb loaded up truckload after truckload of broken pine limbs and debris. The Bomb delivered the much needed portable generator, water and other supplies. While the prissy Sunday Truck and Traveling Van sat all nice and comfortable in the garage, the Bomb saw the McKees through a trying time.

So today I would like to thank whoever stole the ole Bomb for bringing it back -- back to where it belonged and where it sat for many years, right there, proudly on display, in the front drive.

And I would like to add: One day, if you are lucky, there will be a Bomb in your life, too!

______________________________________


Anne McKee, weekly columnist for The Meridian Star, is a native Mississippian with a penchant for southern humor. She also writes for Meridian Plus Magazine where she is a feature writer and Editor of the “Fifty Plus Page.” Her works have been featured on “The Commentaries Program” for Mississippi Public Broadcasting, Radio. She is a speechwriter with her most recent speech for Miss Rodeo Mississippi, 2006. Anne is a founding executive board member of The Mississippi Writers Guild. Read her feature article in the September/October, 2006 issue of Mississippi Magazine.

Read more of Anne’s work at these sites:
~~ authorsden.com/annebmckee
~~ Mississippi Writers Guild
~~ Meridian Plus Online
~~ Meridian Star


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