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My Corvette Addiction

River Bergstrom

I was only 12 when my older brother came home from the Army and bought his first Corvette; a 1956 blue one with white coves and the stock 265 and 3-speed manual. I wanted to drive anything since I was about 4, so my brother looked at me one day and said; "So, you think you're so smart, I'll bet you think you could drive my Corvette!" And I replied; "Yep!", and he said; "Let's go!" So off we went...and the hook was set. The 265 was beginning to smoke a bit, and the three-speed t-ranny was showing it's age, but I love it all the same. I was hooked. Not long and he had a good job and bought a brand new 365 hp solid lifter 327 and a Muncie 4-speed from the local Chevrolet dealer. After that transplant the car really came alive. I remember him teaching me how to steer the car with the loud pedal. I loved it all so much...and wanted one so bad. But, as fate would have it, over the years I had lots of friends that had Corvettes and were kind enough to let me drive them, but it seemed like I would never be able to afford one.

Finally just a couple years ago I found a 1991 Bright Red C4 that a guy had let sit way too long and I got it for a good price. Had to do a lot of work to it; only two injectors were working! It's a wonder I got home with it...but now, after having new injectors, new alternator and battery, new clutch, brakes and headlight door motors, she's up and running and my nephew and I got to take it on a road trip to Portland, Ore. to see a friend of mine who is playing with the band Steely Dan.

What a trip! Portland is about 210 miles from us...and we made it up and back on one tank of gas! Setting the cruise control on 60-70 mph, we never listened to any music or radio...we talked and talked. So glad to be able to do that with my nephew, who was recently back from the 82nd Airborne serving in Afghanistan, Haiti and Iraq. When he left I told him to come back with all his faculties and limbs intact. And he did. He's got a little bit of hearing loss and his knees aren't the greatest, but he's home and what a joy to have him around...and to get to share my Corvette experiences with him. I'm now 66 years old...it took me most of my life to finally get to be able to afford a Corvette...and the C4 was never my favorite. But I'm loving this baby! I'm so glad I got it, and every time I drive it I fall in love with it, all over again. I don't know if I'll ever be able to afford a newer one or an older one...I'd love to have a 56 or 57 because I think those are just the most beautiful Corvettes ever made. They are so expensive these days, but I will never sell this one!  Someone else can have it after I die. They sure ain't getting it before that!! Thanks! RB

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