October wraps up next Tuesday and November’s arrival come the following morning to me signals the start of way less than ideal conditions for all-things car hobby. This is especially true for us living in two season states (winter and construction) like Wisconsin. The past few days I’ve been scanning Craigslist and shooting off emails about storage units and reaching out to my insurance to company to put a stop on coverage once that garage door comes slamming down shut. Depressing, yes. Chances are right now, if you peak out your window and gawk at the the nearest tree, its colors have either peaked in hues of gold, copper, yellow and orange, or its leaves have completely dissipated leaving bare branches. Let’s hope the first observation is correct for driving enjoyment’s sake.
Fall is my favorite time to sit behind the wheel and get out on the road. To me, there’s something just sentimental and bittersweet about getting in your fun car or saddled across the seat of your beloved motorcycle and driving along on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon as explosions of leaves float down and around you. It’s like magic. I mean, let’s be honest, when’s the last time you went for a drive for the sole, emotional-enriching purpose of going for a drive? If you can’t remember, this should change.
I’ve done my part. Instead of piloting my usual Saab 9-2x that I commonly refer to as the “Adventure Mobile,” six-hours roundtrip to a state park on the western side of Wisconsin, I changed it up a bit. Instead, I topped off my 2001 Chevrolet Camaro (you know, the one I had well, an interesting time lowering and upgrading the suspension) with premium fuel and crammed all of my camping gear inside of it. Combining two of my hobbies together, the outdoors and cars, is without a doubt always a win. Sure I burned through way more gas, potentially damaged my spine driving over rough, bumpy roads, and shed a few frustrated words when trying to slide my stuffed Gregory Baltoro 65l backpacking pack past my tilted-forward driver seat into the rear cargo area, but it was all worth it.
So this weekend, (and if future weekends when weather allows), get behind the wheel and go. If you’ve got a convertible…drop it, t-tops…strip them off, sunroof…pop it open, just windows?…roll them down all the way. Let that cool crisp fall air into the car and hit your face. Plant a thermos of tea, hot coffee, or a Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Late if you’re desperately feeling basic, in that cup holder. Turn on your tunes and crank that volume knob just a few extra notches to the right. If your motorized object of passion has a sound that makes you smile however, maybe leave the music off for a while and just reward your ears with a glorious exhaust note, supercharger wine, turbo hiss or engine roar. Create that perfect, heavenly driving atmosphere, pick your direction and go, one last time before the roads become salty, icy and gray.
If you’re a lucky cat living in the hot and dry states where you don’t have to worry about the “W” or “S” words, cary on and keep hooning.