While I would consider myself a car enthusiast, it’s not in the way of owning vehicles with large engines and high price tags.  This story is about my Saab.  Since a kid I’ve been fascinated with design, power, feel, and the sound of vehicles.  I’ve gone to many car shows with friends and family and enjoy the atmosphere and personality of the industry.  In general, there is a uniqueness among car people that is inviting and fun to be around.

There are car clubs in nearly all forms – BMW, Corvette, Ferrari, Jeep, Mustang, Porsche, muscle cars, euro cars, car mods, you name it… and many are organized non-profits run by volunteers that benefit their communities in some way. So that feels good.  Here locally, Rolling into Roanoke has many community beneficiaries.

Some of my favorite drives have been to car events and even better with nowhere to go with one of my kids – for a long talk, for an afternoon drive to enjoy the fall leaves, even for a late night run to the store.  I’ve even run out of gas, running from appointment to appointment too busy to take care of what I should.  That day it was as if my Saab pulled me in and said “slow down there big fella and take a break.” It was right, I needed to pay attention to the things I ought to!

I’ve always noticed cars and their types, the brands, and styles.  Not everyone is like that, the ones that do are usually some form of car enthusiast.  Growing up we had a family friend that had a red Saab 900 “Classic.”  It looked quirky and I loved it.  It inspired me.  He was a successful businessman.  I had dreams of becoming a successful businessman.  Match made.

Fast forward to a time of transition of my work life as an employee of a billion dollar insurance company to jumping into ownership in a local insurance agency.  With five kids in the house, my wife and I talked about trading my six speed Mercedes to one she was more comfortable driving when I was driving the family mover.  I found a gem in the 2010 Saab 9-5 Aero, a cream puff of a car with one prior owner.  It’s all the quirky personality I expected with that brilliant Saab design too.  Mine is 1 of 3,419 imported that year and 1 of 137 in my color, carbon grey.  These are car people stats.  For perspective there were 327,553 Toyota Camry’s sold in the USA in 2010.

While my identity is wrapped up in a deeper faith in Jesus, I do love the car piece of my life.  You’ll see in the pictures my 9-5 in the parking lot solo.  It’s a bleak looking photo, kind of dreary and dark, but I won’t forget it.  It was a Friday, late, I was the only one in the whole building finishing up work for a new client.  Who is happy to be in the office late on a Friday?  Somehow I was.  As I was leaving it echoed childhood dreams of “successful businessman” coming out to my Saab.

I don’t think I’m the only person out there that thinks the same things.

Some of us remember doing ridiculous things in the car as a teenager, or riding around with Dad, or washing the family car, or smelling the carburetor fumes of old, or seeing grandpa change his oil, or as a child touching the curves of your dream car.  The stories to be told.   Actually they are endless and they are told by car people.  Everywhere.

Jeremy Hyde | Colligan & Company

How to insure your special or collector car?  That’s a different story but can be found here.