The One that Got Away
Harrison • San Diego, CA
University of San Diego
Her name was Susan. She was my first kiss. My first reckless love. My first childhood sweetheart. But she's not important, Bruce is important.
Bruce is the name given to my mom's 1999 limited edition Ford Explorer (an homage to the soul-soothing Bruce Springsteen). Bruce served as my mother's noble steed for tens of thousands of miles until the day when my brother turned 16. He took the reins and saddled up. By the time I was endowed with my license, Bruce was a meager mare one buck tooth away from being classified as a donkey. But he was mine.
I loved that beast like he was my biological baby. From the faded leather interior to the steering wheel cover held on by a strand of thread, Bruce was my soul mate. I drove him everywhere every day ever opportunity I got. I volunteered for errands to break Bruce out of the retirement home. It didn't matter to me that I had a fifty percent chance of the car starting since the battery was corroded to the bone after 12 years and 110,000 miles; I lived for those odds.
Bruce safely delivered my friends and me to countless adventures in the mountains of Colorado and through the snowy roads with his all-wheel drive and tires akin to tank treads. Bruce carried me safely through years of peril and headstrong Colorado drivers with no accidents. Alas, our time had come.
It was time for me to go to college. My brother needed Bruce to get around school in Omaha, and I was going away to San Diego. I couldn't take an old colt like Bruce to the coast, the land of mustangs... I'll always have a soft spot in my six-cylinder heart for Bruce.