Joined: May 16, 2010
Location: Round Hill, VA
|Posted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 8:13 am Post subject: My 16th Birthday!
|A little background before I get to my 16th birthday.
At an early age, I really liked Beetles. We, as a family, had never owned one, and I never knew anyone that had one. I was born in '81, and growing up in Pennsylvania, it wasn't a prime-time to be seeing VW's everywhere. As I got older, and closer to driving age, I was really looking forward to getting a Beetle as my first car. I've yet to drive one, or even sit in one, but I knew I wanted one! I had been given Beetle models to build, the toy cars to play with, and replicas to look at; my family knew I liked them.
I am, maybe 12 (early-90's), and I find out that my Dad has a friend who has one. Like many others on this site - he intends to rebuild this Beetle, and has no plans on selling it. I, vaguely, remember hearing or naively thinking he'd let me in a couple of years. As any young kid would have, I had seen a slight possibility, and dreamed about buying this car... so this was it! Unfortunatley, this car was just an infatuation of mine, and slowly slipped away to a fleeting memory over the years.
Flash forward a couple of years, I am now 15 and driving is on my mind. My parents are in no way whatsoever in a financial situation that they could afford a car, but I hold out hope! I mean, they could easily get one on the cheap. Right? A Beetle would be, at least, 16 years old at the time, so it wouldn't be breaking the bank. This is, of course, what I was telling myself.
My mom knew what I wanted, but always shot it down, quickly stating, "they're unsafe, no engine in the front!" My Dad hated Beetles. He was a muscle head, and always told me that he knew people who owned them, and they always had things break. He strongly encouraged me to look for a more reliable car. So, going into my 16th Birthday, I knew a couple of things: My parents are too poor to buy me one, and they don't like the idea of me owning one. I really set myself up for dissapointment, but I was young and I always held out hope.
My family and I head up to my girlfriends house to celebrate my big day. Her family is pretty well off, and we were pretty serious - as serious as you can be at 15yrs old. They have a decent size of property with a a large shed towards the back of their property. When we arrived, I was told, "do not go near the shed." Odd instructions, and I got a little curious and excited, but I listened. We swam in their pool, we rode go karts around the property, but I didn't go near the shed.
After playing and enjoying the great summer weather, it was time to open presents. The gifts were nothing memorable, and the cards were geared towards the "16 and driving" theme. It comes down to the last gift....from my parents! Although, later my Dad told me, "I had nothing to do with that, that was all your Mother!" I am handed a heavier-than-normal envelope. I open the card, and again, driving themed, and it read that "You should be careful what you wish for!" Inside the envelope was another wrapped item, which is what provided that odd weightyness to the envelope. I open it, it is a VW Keychain with a single key attached, and a note saying to "Go look behind the shed."
At this point, I am freaking out. My girlfriend is walking with me, and the rest of the family is trailing behind. "MEN DON"T CRY!", I tell myself, repeatedly. I am tearing up, and my girlfriend has this uneasy way about her. We get nearer to the shed, and I am thinking "how incredibly awesome my parents are, and even though I didn't think it could happen, it did! They bought me a CAR!"
I rounded the corner of the shed that I "couldn't go near", and I see what had been waiting for me! It was a small, wrapped present. I am now very confused, and my girlfiend whispers "I'm sorry." To say that I am dissappointed at this point, would be a huge understatement. Once the family gathers around, I open the last gift. Inside is a 1967, powder blue, replica VW Beetle. I am devastated! I went from low expectations, to mildy intrigued, to pure happiness (brought tears to my eyes it did), and then I was left absolutely crushed! I laughed, and everyone laughed at, or with me. I really didn't know how to react. Sure, it was not what I was expecting, and I was sad I didn't get the car, but it was a 'funny' prank gift.
Shortly after, I was able to find the humor in its intent. It was a great prank, at least, that is what I was telling myself to help me cope. I didn't hate my Mom after this horrible event. It was funny how people quickly denounced her actions during and afterwards. My girlfriend apologized during and after, and like I mentioned earlier, my Dad wanted no part of it.
I didn't write this for sympathies, this happened 20 years ago, so I think I am over it.....maybe. I still have this replica, and I still love my Mother. All in all, I did learn that you NEVER do this to your kids!
I did, eventually, get a Beetle, in 2010, and I am going to write that story next...