2015 Membership/Renewal Form now available. Remember, no meeting in January.

The Vintage Automobile Club of Ocean County, NJ welcomes you.

Hi, Everyone,
Happy St. Patrick's Day!
Are you sick of Winter yet? Are you tired of shoveling your sidewalk and driveway, and scraping the ice off your windshield? Do you dread watching the news of another upcoming storm, which means you’ll have to go to the supermarket and stock up on a lot of stuff you don’t normally eat? Do you get mad every time you have to put on boots and a coat just to get the mail? Is that what’s troubling you, bunky?

Well, that’s too bad! I happen to like Winter. It gives me a chance to slow down a little. The leaves are done. I can’t cut the grass. There are no insects buzzing around me. And I get to read more.

What I really like about Winter are the memories. I come from a family of four boys. When I was five years old, the four of us got our very own sleds for Christmas. Flexible-Flyers. Each one had our name stenciled on the underside. I think Santa Claus did that.

I didn’t have to wait long to use my sled because that year we had a White Christmas. It seems we always had a White Christmas when I was a kid. In fact, there always seemed to be snow on the ground during the entire Winter season. Every kid in the neighborhood had a sled; a real sled, not one of those saucers that were impossible to control. No sir, the steering on a Flexible-Flyer was controlled by a wooden cross piece that was used with either your feet or hands, depending if you descended the hill face first or feet first. Some kids sat upright and controlled the steering with a rope that ran through the holes at the end of the cross piece. Amateurs! Every kid knew the rope didn’t last long. If you happened to ride over the rope, you not only slowed yourself down, but the rope soon frayed into sections. The rope was only used to pull your sled back up the hill.

If you were really lucky, you lived in an area where a hill was a short distance from your house, like a school with a long sloping lawn. That’s what I had, and it was right next to my house. How lucky was that? We would start right after breakfast. The whole gang arrived at around the same time. If you went down the hill alone, you laid on your stomach; if you had a passenger, the two of you sat up. Every downhill run was a race, with an ensuing race back up the hill, rope in hand. After a while, you did the train. That’s where everybody lies on their stomach and you fit the toes of your boots into the front part of the sled behind you. The “engineer” tried his hardest to shake off the last two or three sleders by pulling his cross piece very hard to the left and right, which sent the train into a whipping motion.

If you were cold at first, you were sweating by lunch time. You could feel the heat from your body coming out of your clothes, right across your face. When you went home for lunch, your fingers were so cold it was hard to unbuckle your boots. Not true boots really; they were overshoes with those now snow encrusted buckles that wouldn’t loosen completely. Then you’d just kick off your boots with your Buster-Browns still inside them.

Lunch was usually a grilled cheese sandwich on white bread, cut diagonally so you could dunk the sandwich into your tomato soup. After lunch you relaxed a while in front of the warm glow of your Admiral black and white TV and watched Hopalong Cassidy.

Do you still hate Winter? Look out the window right now. Can you see who’s there? It’s you in your one piece snow suit, with mittens and rosy cheeks. And remember, bunky, never give up, never give up—that ship!

Don't forget to check DowntownTomsRiver.com for information about local shows & events in our area.

John Mahoney

John Mahoney - President
Gary Stabile - Vice President
Denny Derion - Secretary
Everett Ross - Treasurer
Marge Kurtz-Cusack - Sunshine
Denny Derion - Membership
Bill Bottorff - Editor
Rob Mahoney - WebMaster


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