My Little Bull

Little Bull in the far field.

We like, even love, our pickups.  The vehicle in people’s lives possess an almost life-like identity as we accelerate, speed and reach our destination, or for that matter, drive just to be driving — touring, it used to be called.  We remember our first car we owned, the first car or pickup we drove.  My first lesson in driving came in a 1950 Chevy pickup, green in color, in the sands of Sulfur Springs road, near Bend, Texas.  I was ten-years-old and the year was 1952.  My grandmother sat beside me and taught me clutch and foot-feed (accelerator).  I stalled it one time and then, off we went!  I loved that Chevy pickup, and, of course, the instructor who finally gave me a passing grade.

This month, December, I am selling my 2002 Ford F-150.  Its name is Little Bull.  His coat is gray.

Little Bull has carried me, my friends, my family and all things horsey and mechanical for nearly ten years.  He has 260,000 plus miles and is tired and broke, his transmission needing replacement.  The service department at Arrow Ford in Abilene, Texas, holds his remains and a repairman wishes to purchase Little Bull and use him for short hauls about the city.  For me to repair him costs $2,500.00 and that is beyond my budget.  The repairman can tend Little Bull back into health for way less than I can and he keenly wants him.  Little Bull is still wanted, still admired, and so I have made the choice to sell.

Chariots, wagons and pickups have carried commerce and people through the ages.  Vehicles have been spaces for conversations and monologues, carriages to weddings and funerals and platforms for hay and feed.  Little Bull has pulled trailers with injured horses to the vet, pregnant mares for foaling and newly-bought furniture from Dallas.

I shan’t grow maudlin about Little Bull for it is not good for me and he deserves better in his next life than to be sent away in sorrow.  He’s been a good boy, a fine man and now, in his later years, a helpmate for another respectful owner.  Little Bull may be cannibalized for parts, his wheels and tires going one way, the headache rack another, but I have cherished his life, his dependability and his character.  Like that Chevy in the sands of central Texas, I shall never forget my Little Bull.


Filed under Life in Balance, Recollections 1942-1966

8 responses to “My Little Bull

  1. Our beloved vehicles share so much of our lives with us. I have always named mine, feeling a kinship, as they have faithfully taken me across the country more than once.

    That’s still a good looking truck and will contribute nicely to its new owners needs.

    From chariots to pickup trucks, life has sure moved us down the road.

  2. I had to do the same this spring with my 98 Explorer with well over 240,000. It was time. She, like your Little Bull, was one of the most dependable, serviceable cars I have ever owned and the decision to finally sell her took me many months. Actually when I think about it it was probably closer to a year. I do miss her, she was my companion and workmate for thirteen years. She hauled everything from groceries and garden needs, to my bike and kayak, to my infant grandchildren strapped safely in their chairs. She delivered me to my place of work and carried me to the ocean and mountains when my spirit needed renewing. She even provided protection when I camped being roomy enough to sleep in. I definitely cherish all the years of service and enjoyment she brought. The 2004 Escape that has become her replacement is not half the car but it’s what I can afford and is dependable. And, like you that is what I need in my life right now.

    I’m so glad that someone wants Little Bull and can afford the repairs he so desperately needs. I think it makes the decision to sell a little easier to bear, I know it did for me.

  3. We do get to feel affection for our vehicles, don’t we. I’ve felt the same way about most that I’ve had to replace over the years. I still have fond memories of my first car, a 1952 Chevy coupe.

  4. Hej Jack! We had various cars while I was married but no one to remember. But one of my colleagues had a car, which was famous among friends and in the firm. A little French Citroen, one of those fragile ones that would crush like a harmonica, if it hit something. ( I think they are forbidden now). We called it “The Orange Lightning”. This little French car had its own temper, it often stopped suddenly without any reason. My colleague jumped out and hit it in front with a stick, crying “Vive la France” – an the orange lady usually obeyed. She will probably be the part of a short story once.
    Cheers to Little Bull.
    Grethe `)

  5. My first car was a forest green VW Bug. I called it Mephie – short for Mephistopheles, because it was a devil of a car.

    Then, I had a couple that weren’t named. It seems to me that cars, like T.S. Eliot’s famous cats, have names that they either reveal to us, or don’t. My new baby is Princess, but I kept my old car to haul dirt and varnish and such. It’s name, of course, is Old Faithful.

    It’s such a pleasure to sell a vehicle to someone who can make use of it. I sold my last Toyota because it had over 350,000 miles and I didn’t want the repairs that surely would be needed. But, I sold it for a hundred dollars to a single mother with two kids. She had no transportation to work and was depending on her sister. It was wonderful.

  6. Cowboy

    Howdy Jack –

    I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I first seen the post title.

    Yep – I’m glad you posted a tribute of sorts to “little bull” , a perfect way to remember a friend of sorts.

  7. Losing a long and well used truck is like saying goodbye to a good friend. You’ll always have your memories, but no longer the experience of starting the motor in the morning and listening to it purr. Good thing there are a lot of fish in the sea!

  8. I know just how you felt, making this decision. I have always anthropomorphized my vehicles also because they play such an integral part in our lives. Good to know Little Bull will live on as a donor.

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