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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Rubber Necking Over Peeled Paint Again

It was thick 112 degree heat in the air.  I had some roller skating songs playing in my Prius while heading out of Historic Buckeye, Arizona.  Fruit stand people, cats and pack rats were standing in the shade.  I saw something out of the corner of my eye that made me want to stop the car on the side of the country road for a closer look. 

It was a wonderful old bus sitting all by itself baking in the Arizona sun.    The photo above is a lazy snap *photo taken with just hanging the camera out our car window*.  I thought to myself,  "It would be better if I could get closer."  The bus was wonderfully aged with patches of blue, gray and rust.

I pulled up the drive and just decided, "What have I got to loose?"  Nobody is going to shoot a woman wearing a black silk binocular print dress in the middle of this still late afternoon.  A gentle looking aged woman answered the door.  I was relieved.  I had this.  I gave her my card and just asked if I could take some photos of the wonderful bus in her back yard.  She smiled behind her paper mouth cover that Micheal Jackson used to wear.  In her dark house I saw a man sitting with his back to me.  I had clearance.  My heart raced as I scuttled to the dust bowl of a back yard.

Red cat was laying under the shade of a big cotton wood tree.  I said hi to her but she walked away.

What year do you think this bus is?  Isn't it fantastic.  It is so perfect.

I love it because....well why do I love it?   Maybe because I see the past as being more pure and innocent than the present?   Because I can see kids with slick vaseline hair boarding this bus listening to the bus driver's Motown?   I just get excited over history's trinkets.  I rubber neck for peeled paint.

Proof that the 50's weren't really in black and white?  Oh the simplicity of this light fixture.  You just replaced the light.  You didn't have to take apart the car to reprogram the lighting systems.

As I was walking back to my car, a man about 90-ish in an electric wheel chair appeared.  I could sense he wanted to chat.  I found myself engrossed in conversation with Thomas Stocks who moved out here in 1950.  He is a jack of all trades working as a plumber, electrician and water engineer for all the Buckeye wells back in the day.  He told me it was his idea to paint his house pink.  I asked him if he told his 'man friends' this; he smiled and boom, we were friends.  When I asked him how involved he was with Historic Buckeye, he told me proudly told me how he was a Whisker Champ during the Helzapoppin' Rodeo of 1954.

Images of America, Buckeye page 60

Honestly, I think Thomas is the guy second to the left.  I think I will pay him another visit when the weather is cooler with our Model A.  He can't ride in it but he would like if somebody knocked on his door again.

I bet he had a brewski at Garza's back in the day.  Totally.

My world slowed down talking with him.  We shared personal stories.  I put my dark shades in my purse and stooped low so that I was looking up at him.  I was sweating in the broil mode of weather and my feet were wanting to bust free from my black wedge Taryn Rose heels.

I shook his soft skinned hand and was on my way.

Have you knocked on somebody's door lately?


Vix said...

I can't describe how much I enjoyed this post. I was almost there with you. The photos do remind me of images I've had in my head when reading vintage American literature.
How wonderful to strike up a conversation with the old guy, they are just the best. The bus is spectacular, I'd love that for a road trip.

Micaela said...

i was just about to say the same thing-- thank you for taking me along ;) the pink house, the FANTASTIC bus, the instant friendship...

i love it all.

thais said...

oh my! I have to re write vintage vixen above and tell you that I love this post. how much story from a knock at the door. first off the bus is just fantastic. can you imagine a gorgeous photo shoot with it? my head is dreaming... and your new friend? isn't life full of small and simple worthy moments :)

Devon said...

you are more brave than i! but sounds like it was a fantastic experience! i love that bus! it has so many stories to tell!

Cathy C said...

I am a Buckeye native, could you email me and let me know where Garza's South End Grocery was located? Where did you find the photo, I have never seen nor heard of it. If you could let me know by email, I would sure appreciate it. Also the location of the Bus and pink house. Thanks you for your time.
Cathy Conley
Buckeye, AZ