One final piece of sad news: about a week before David and I left for Tasmania the Red Menace died an unexpected death while travelling southbound on the I5 . The weather was bad and we were in a hurry to see some friends in Seattle. When the traffic ahead came screeching to a halt we played along, but the driver behind us wasn’t paying attention – he plowed into us and, in turn, plowed us into the car in front of us to make a Red Menace sandwich.
It wasn’t immediately obvious that the Red Menace was a write-off, but it was clear to us that we couldn’t leave Tess at Farcical Farm without a utility vehicle. We rented a car (spent the rest of the weekend having fun in Seattle) and bought a grey 2001 Tacoma 4X4 three days later. When ICBC finally gave the Red Menace the nix we rescued the canopy, our WALL-E mascot and the Nazi teapot* and transferred them to this new, pale shadow.
Some six months later we still haven’t agreed on a name for this newcomer. To be honest, my heart’s not really in it yet. I’ve been driving it a lot over the past week so I feel like we’re beginning to develop more of a rapport, but there have been no waves of inspiration. We’ll let you know when something settles.