A funny “ha-ha” story. When Dad bought his little used Ford truck – his last one. The handle that was meant to raise and lower the spare tire from the back was nowhere to be found. The manual said the handle was behind the bench seat and nothing was there.

So he always kept the spare in the bed of the truck where it had been when he got it. In fact, he only carried a spare when he was driving out of town. If he was local, he figured he’d just call one of us to either bring it or pick him up to get it. In fairness, I don’t ever remember that happening. At any rate, he was sure it saved gas over time…. It might have but the act of picking it up and taking it out over and over would have driven me mad. Never mind eventually I would have left town without it.

In fact, not long after his stroke, my Blazer was in the shop getting brakes done and we drove his truck to Americus to see him in the nursing home. After getting there, when he found out which vehicle we drove, he asked me if I remembered to get the spare. I think I will long remember the frown on his face when I realized it was still at home. I’m sure he worried about us going home with no spare tire and no one to call. I can certainly admit it was an adjustment in life not having the comfort of knowing I had someone to fall back on if I needed help after his stroke. But nothing exciting happened except I put the tire in there to stay that afternoon.

Flash forward over a year since his death and I was putting in a new air filter this afternoon. While the hood was up, I noticed a bar going across the front immediately behind where the prop that holds the hood up is located??? What is that I wondered? Is there more than one prop to hold the hood in place? Why???

I gave it a tug and as soon as it popped up, I realized I was staring at the long lost handle to raise and lower the spare tire. HA! It has little clips to hold it in place there so it seems to be the legit place to store it?? This was a funny and weird discovery.

As soon as I found it I could hear Dad asking why I didn’t find it ten years ago! Although honestly it must not have bothered him much. I mentioned more than once we could probably find a replacement and he always shrugged it off. Even if he had never missed it, I’m sure he would have laughed at how often he had stood right there in front of it without ever realizing it was there.

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