Early Bird Swap Meet – Lethbridge, Alberta

Sometimes southern Alberta in February is a dry, brown winter landscape, swept by warm Chinook winds. Not this weekend, however.

We camped out in our 1976 GMC-chassis Class ‘C’ in the parking lot of the Exhibition Centre, the only ones crazy enough to do so on this -20 degree night.

Having survived, we set up as The Carburetor Doctor, flogging carburetor parts.

The problem with being way ahead of your time, as I see it, is that when your time comes, you’re dead.


Alas, the Crosley suffered a similar fate. Seeing the thing close-up for the first time, I couldn’t help thinking that it was cuter than a ‘Smart Car’ – certainly cheaper in constant dollars.

I found a very sad example of a Crosley wagon. Still more class than a ‘For-Two‘.

Crosley Wagon

My favourite car at the Coal Town shindig was a black ‘49 Cadillac coupe that veritably oozed Sam Spade style – refreshing indeed in this metrosexual era of seat belts, men with plucked eyebrows and airbags everywhere.

1949 Cadillac Coupe

I couldn’t help but marvel at the workmanship that went into this beautifully restored International… so much more real than the stuff they hype on TV. After all, this truck was part of someone’s life and livelihood once – feeding his children, paying for his home and helping make his way through life. Not a rich kid’s toy.

originally posted February 12, 2007