For a slight change of pace, we present a “Scene of a Jeep” rather than a “Scene from a Jeep”. At a recent party with friends we were given this creative cake with a 1/18th scale model Jeep climbing what I like to call the “Chocolate Chunk Trail”. As a result of this thoughtful gift, I now have two Jeeps – one big one that guzzles the gasoline, and a little one that I have to push with my hand get it moving. Actually, when I neglect to put gas in the big one, both Jeeps require pushing. So except for relative size, they are proving to be quite similar. As the evening passed, I came to discover a few other universal truths that apply to all Jeeps both big and small.
First, everybody wants a ride in your Jeep. We've been taking friends for rides in the big Jeep for a while now. When we get visitors in New York City we offer them our standard top-down Manhattan tour complete with a few passes through Times Square. Once in a while someone gets the idea to stand up and stick his head out the top. I discourage that, but it's hard for some to resist. When in the country, like this past week, we'll take some friends four-wheeling in a snow storm. By comparison at the party, mini-Jeep was constantly getting pushed back and forth through the choco-mud and over the fudgy-boulders. The cake's baker reports that the children were not the only offenders. Some people always have to stick their fingers in the cake. Put a Jeep on the cake and forget about it.
Second, in all cases, when you clean off the mud after a run on the trail, you'll always find some later that you missed. Big Jeep and I once took a ride through the cow pasture. As mentioned in a previous story, the farmers call the mud that cows make “gravy”. When it dries on your Jeep, I call it cement. In some parts of the world I hear that people actually cover the outside walls of their houses with it. It's that tough and water-resistant. I tried to blast it away with a power washer that could cut your hand off, but it wouldn't budge in some spots. A month later I was still finding cow-gravy-cement stuck under the hard-to-reach places. It was no different with mini-Jeep. After the party, the hostess presented me with mini-Jeep and said she tried to clean off the chocolate, but couldn't get it all. I said, “I know. I've seen that happen.” I'm still finding chocolate on mini-Jeep, but in this case I'm OK with just licking it off.
Finally, no Jeep is complete if it doesn't at least occasionally go off-road. Imagine if my friends simply gave mini-Jeep to us in it's original box. It still would have been a wonderful gift all by itself. But instead, there it was on top of the cake – buried up to its rear axle in frosting and hung up on a boulder, just as it should be! Today, mini-Jeep is all cleaned up and sitting in its space on my book shelf. After the snow, storm big Jeep is also now safely parked in the garage. Two clean Jeeps resting on solid ground... for now at least.