Some of my favorite rides with my family growing up were in a big, green Buick Electra. The model covered six decades and was the pride of the corner of Blackpoint and Ave of Two in the early ’70s. The car took its rightful place in the newly adorned front driveway. I was in school at Forestdale, had my first kiss under my belt from a nice girl down the road, and consumed myself with basketball and rock n’ roll.
Like all of our cars, the Electra knew the route. If it was a Sunday afternoon, we headed to my maternal grandparents’ house. This meant a drive west on Rumson Road then south on Seven Bridges Road (which doesn’t and never had seven bridges on it). My sister and I would be sprawled out on the back seat, close enough for protection but far enough away from each other to remind ourselves we were brother and sister.
In a few years, I would break the front windshield of that car one day when I talked my mom into giving me and my surfboard a ride to the beach. I pushed a little too hard loading it, and the nose feathered a crack in the glass. I remember standing in the front yard driveway. Fear overcame me as I knew how this would go, and end. My mom must have felt particularly brave this day as I started to walk back towards the house, giving up on my surf session. She asked where I was going and I pointed to my room. She waved me back, explaining the damage was already done, and the waves were big, so let’s go surfing.
I am still not sure how she pulled that off and will never know. And that is the magic of many moms who manage to make lemonade from lemons and great waves from disaster.