While reading Sister Curran’s reply the other day I was reminded about something I had blocked out of my memory for a long, long time. The infamous Volkswagen Bus! I remember my dad bring it home I didn’t know what to think, it was orange… He had preordered his bus months earlier and had asked for a candy apple red. Of course they messed it all up so he had the choice of the orange bus or waiting three months until they could ship him one from the mainland. So being a local boy and not wanting to create a big stink, my dad took the orange bus, not realizing that it would define us for the next ten years.
Soon after we brought our new bus home these marvels of German engineering began to pop up everywhere on Moana Street. It seemed they had created the perfect Mormon transportation vehicles. You could take out the middle rowel and fit in what ever or whom ever you needed to and as much as you wanted to. In the days before car seats and seat belt laws it was great for trekking to the beach with 20 kids jammed inside, or to town to shop for groceries or trick or treating with the sliding door open, sitting there dangling your feet over the edge.
I remember someone got their hand slammed in the Curran’s sliding door on Quinn’s birth day, I think it was Calvin Jolley but I need verification on that.
As people began to hop on the VW Bus bandwagon, there were some who resisted the trend. Still it was no use the VW Bus was Moana streets chosen mode of transportation.
As with most things in Hawaii the salt air began to erode our orange bus and the holes began to grow, our large sunroof soon became the perfect water feature. When it rained, and we all know how it can rain, we would huddle up in the far corner hoping that dad didn’t stop to quickly. If he did the water that had gather on the roof would come gushing in soaking everyone in the back. It was almost a ritual, your literal baptism for riding in our car. Eventually the rust got to our muffler, and there was a certain sound it made as it traveled down the street, My mom said she could hear my dad coming home from all the way from BYU, she’d say “your dads on his way”, and sure enough. Thinking back it was pretty much a death trap on wheels, but we loved our orange bus. I was sad the day we sold it. When I returned home from England, I saw it around Laie not so orange but still running and still rusting away.¬