This is ours. It’s a vintage model. We call it a Magoo Car.
Sean’s Godmother Gigi bought it at a garage sale for her kids. Her kids are grown now and have children of their own. Even Gigi’s grandchildren have outgrown it, so a few years ago, when we were at her house in East Texas, Sean fell in love with it and Gigi let us “borrow” it.
Like all kids, Sean loves that little car. And I love that Sean loves that little car. I have loved watching him play with that little car, putting gas in the little car, washing the little car with the garden hose, turning it upside down and working on the engine of that little car.
But now I’m ready for the Magoo car to bring joy to another family. I’m tired of looking at the Magoo car and want to reclaim the space that it occupies on my patio — especially now that Sean has outgrown it. These days, he can barely wedge his skinny daddy long legs into the drivers seat, yet he can’t bear the thought of parting with it.
Anytime I mention that it might be time to return the Magoo car to Gigi, this suggestion is met with a powerful argument: No.
Several weeks ago, we returned from vacation around midnight and found the Magoo car sitting at the entrance to the neighborhood, about two blocks from our house. Under the shallow gray circle of light from the streetlamp, it looked like a sad old dog, waiting for its owner to return. No telling how long the little car had been parked on the side of the road, suffering the sun and rain and curious stares from all the neighbors.
The last I had seen the car, it was parked behind the house near the garage. Had someone taken it out for a joy ride and then abandoned it? Or had the wind driven it down the driveway and pushed it along the street? Or having noticed that we were leaving, maybe it tried to follow us, finally giving up exhausted after two blocks. Or maybe — maybe it was searching for Gigi, trying to make its way back to East Texas. I don’t know, but isn’t it fun to anthropomorphize?
When we saw it, we wondered how long it had been sitting at the entrance of the neighborhood or why no one had claimed it. But then again, who would want a 30-year-old Magoo car with two broken wheels and no gas cap? Then I remembered who: The long-legged little boy sleeping in the backseat who is in love with that old sun-faded high-miler jalopy. That’s who.
So after a long day of driving, we pulled in the driveway, gingerly pulled the little boy from his car seat and tucked him in his bed bothering only to take off his shoes.
And then AD walked back down the street and brought the little car home and parked it on my patio.
The next morning, when I looked out my back windows and saw that Magoo car occupying space on my patio, I realized that I didn’t really mind. I didn’t really mind at all.
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The people at Graco like me!