I fell in love for the first time in 1972. I was four years old. She was sixteen.
Or at least sixteen, probably a little older. She lived next door. I remember her as the daughter of the family living there, but I can’t be sure that’s true. I never talked to her, and I don’t even think I ever saw her face. I do remember she had shoulder-length blonde hair, and I do have exactly one memory of her.
She’s walking to her house. Her back is to me. She’s wearing a floral print dress. It’s probably June, but maybe late May or early July.
While that’s the only vague memory I have of the girl herself, I have a very vivid memory of what she drove — a candy apple red first generation Ford Mustang convertible. I’m not sure of the exact year, but in my mind, it’s a 1968.
I’m not a car guy by any means, but every time I see a candy apple red Ford Mustang convertible (which isn’t often), that short memory re-plays my head a few times, not unlike a Vine.
And that’s why the 1968 Mustang convertible is one of three cars that has an emotional effect on me. There’s also the promise of the flying car from my youth. And then, of course, there’s the last of the V8 Interceptors.