Denise Anderson Vehicles become catch-all


I had to drive my husband’s car to work the other day. Every time I get in it, I’m surprised by what he keeps in there.

Now, I know my Durango isn’t spotless. Empty soda cans and McDonald’s bags litter the floor in the back seat. I have to have a couple of extra jackets in there just in case, and I always have a small pillow and a blanket, again, just in case. My front seat usually has my work bag stuffed full of paper, and Daryl bought me a car organizer that has more papers and my business cards and such in it. The front cubby hole houses my keys, receipts, a couple of magnets and miscellaneous change.

Daryl’s car has none of that. It does, however, have a pair of coveralls no matter the season, a pair of jumper cables and a couple of screwdrivers. His cubby hole, although it had a couple of small notes in it, mostly held his sunglasses and reading glasses.

I had to put a couple of boxes in the trunk for work and was worried it would be full of stuff, too — like barbed wire, a steel post driver, a bucket of things like fence staples, and possibly a mineral block.

It was empty, though, except for the bits of alfalfa stuck into the carpet.
I put the boxes in and went on my way.

When I got to work, I opened the trunk and started taking boxes out. I set them inside and only then realized I was leaving a trail of alfalfa.

I told my neighbor Alvin the next day that I was a little embarrassed about the whole thing.

“Actually, it sounds pretty clean and neat for a farm vehicle,” he said.

I supposed it was. I remember my dad’s work truck, and although he wasn’t a farmer, he was a John Deere mechanic. The truck always had little screws and nuts and bolts in the ashtray in front. He also had miscellaneous tools and pipes and such on the seat, as well as coats and jackets. The back of the pickup was full of other stuff, although today I don’t really remember what.

“You want to see mine?” Alvin asked.

We walked over to it.

The back of the pickup did have a couple of alfalfa bales and a mineral block in it. I opened the passenger door and scrambled to catch everything that was trying to fall out.

There were the soda cans and bottles and empty chip packages, tools, bolts and nuts, receipts and papers and a conglomeration of seed caps, magnets and other promotional items. I figured if I wanted to sit in the passenger’s seat, it would take an hour and three garbage bags to make enough room.

I shoved everything back in and slammed the door.

“I see what you mean,” I said.

Alvin nodded. “I keep meaning to clean it out, but I don’t seem to have time,” he said.

That’s what I say about mine, and since then I’ve decided not to complain about Daryl’s. It really wasn’t that bad after all.



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