My great grandma, Minnie Peebler, lived at 1120 School Street. Next door, on the south, lived Joe and Rosella Pimlott. Joe was a nice old guy but he didn’t say much or move around too much. Rosella was a stout, grandmotherly type lady. She was a seamstress and a good one. She always had work stacked up. I knew them because they were Grandma Minnie’s friends and because my Mom sometimes had Rosella make things for us. Mom made me a lot of nice looking shirts out of feed sacks but some projects she deemed to be more suited for Rosella.
Joe had a Model T, black in color (of course) and it looked to be in perfect condition though the paint had faded a little. I’d see Joe, now and then, driving the Model T to the store or wherever he had to go. Joe kept the Model T in his garage which was out in back of the house like most of the older places. You entered the garage from the alley.
When we were little kids, Mom always made my sister and I go with her to Mrs. Pimlott’s house. Mrs. Pimlott was perceptive enough to know that I wouldn’t be too interested in dresses and that kind of stuff and would tell me to go on out and check out the back yard and the garage while I was waiting. Joe had tools and all kinds of stuff hanging on the walls so I could entertain myself for quite a while. I could even get up in the seat of the Model T and pretend to drive.
Time passed and then Joe Pimlott passed as well. Meantime I’ve turned thirteen and have started thinking about cars. In Kansas you could take Driver’s Education when you were thirteen and then get a restricted driver’s license when you were fourteen. The year was 1950 and cars were getting more expensive with V-8 engines and all that other stuff. I knew I wouldn’t have much money so I started thinking about old Joe Pimlott’s Model T Ford hidden away in that garage on the alley. Mrs. Pimlott liked me so I could probably get it for a good price. Model T’s were supposed to be easy to drive and easy to fix and practically indestructible. I knew that this was the car for me and now I had a plan. I would save my money and keep a secret that there was a perfectly good 2
Life IS Hard (cont.)
Model T stashed in Mrs. Pimlott’s garage. The weeks rolled by and I was taking Driver’s Ed. And whenever I went up to visit Grandma Minnie I would slip over and look through the crack between the doors to see if “my” Model T was still there. Everything was fine until one day when I was riding my bike down the street and here comes this Model T driven by Ross Larcom, a kid 2 years older than me. “Hi Ross””, I yells, “Where’d you get your car?” He yells back “I got it from Mrs. PimLott for 15 dollars!”
I was wiped out!
January 2, 2014