Friday, February 11, 2011

University of San Diego "Auto" Biography-- Dominick Sciola -- a 1967 Corvette Sting Ray

Dominick Sciola
Memorable Car Experience
HIST 378
I have always had a strong affinity for the automobile and have been fascinated by the beauty and performance of those that stand out. I have to admit that I am one of those “gawkers” that has to stop, catch my breath, and stare at a fine piece of craftsmanship whenever I see one while on the road. I look at it as an opportunity to stop for a second, forget about all the minor things we worry about on a daily basis, and take pleasure in one of life’s small but wondrous joys. I can confidently say this character trait of mine has been passed onto me by my dad, who too has a deep appreciation for truly magnificent cars. Hence my most memorable experience is without a doubt one I shared with him in his 1967 Corvette Sting Ray during the summer leading up to my freshman year of high school.
I never considered myself a classic muscle car fan until my dad invited me to drive up the California and Oregon coast in his brand new ’67 Vette. He on the other hand had always dreamed of owning one, and when he found the perfect one for him, he quickly snatched it up from Phoenix and invited me to drive it back with him to our home in Seattle. Despite never having even heard of this car at the time, I agreed to take him up on his offer and ride with him. Little did I know how much I would enjoy this opportunity.
We took separate one-way flights for our adventure, with me flying down to San Francisco to wait for him while he went to Phoenix to get the car. We would rendezvous in SF at my brother Nick’s apartment where I was waiting. When he first arrived at Nick’s doorstep, I was taken aback by his new toy. The sleek look and powerful noise of the ‘Vette tickled my senses and I was suddenly quite eager to begin our adventure. We left that day and went on our way back home.
The drive itself was long by any ordinary standard, but flew by due to its extraordinary circumstances. I distinctly remember driving up the 101 freeway in the bright red ’67, kissing the California coast as we wove our way up the Pacific Ocean and letting the deep muscle car engine roar all along the way. We were in no rush to finish our road trip, but nonetheless took few stops. One of the few stops we did take was in one of Northern California’s many monolithic Redwood forests. It was quite ironic how we were now admiring one of nature’s most gorgeous works after experiencing the thrill of one of man’s finest.
The remainder of our trip was predominantly spent on the road and in the Sting Ray. We made the whole trip in two days, stopping at our cousin’s house in Newport Beach, Oregon to rest before the second day of our trip. Perhaps what made this experience most especially memorable for me was that I was able to share it with my dad. Looking back, I feel this was one of our greatest bonding moments and truly brought us together as father and son. This I feel is a characteristic that exemplifies fine cars and makes them so unique; their ability to create a special bond between two people. Every summer, I look forward to driving that car again with my dad. Although the local Seattle neighborhood does not compare to the Pacific Ocean, it is nonetheless a great pleasure to ride in his ’67 Sting Ray and spend a few moments with my dad.

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