The Inside Track : Low Hums - 'Driving In The Country'

Driving In The Country is a song that was started in 2019, but took until 2021 ish to finish. It's dedicated to my father. I had most of the lyrics except there were a few lines that didn't quite fit and I couldn't quite nail them down. For some reason, I couldn't quite decide where we were going, and who we would meet along the drive. There were too many stories to tell! 

Then it finally came..  Where are we going? Well that's obvious ... to the beach! Dad always took the dog or me or both to the beach. What are we going to do along the way? Get a burger of course, like we always used to do, at one of our favorite work time places. What else is going on, well not much. Downtown Friday Harbor is pretty quiet, but there are alot of memories and ghosts around every turn.

My father owned a construction company on San Juan Island and I started working for him during summertime when I was about 8 years old making a dollar an hour! But man, I had 40 bucks a week and that was a lot of money. Much like a good song, I believe in the power of a solid building, that it can weather time,  and hopefully provide some shelter or well being. In 2019 my father had to give up driving because of his dementia. It was very difficult, and he fought tooth and nail to keep the keys. He even tried to hot wire his 356 type A one time. But in the end, he resigned to be the passenger, and seemed OK with it. One of the last things he was able to do was to put the engine together for our VW thing. We got the car in 1991. It was parked across the street from the high school with a for sale sign. 500 bucks! It was fully original, even had the OG engine still (amazing for a VW). 

Some time in 2004 he decided to paint the car and tore it down to the nuts and bolts. He did paint it, but it was never put back together. Body parts with shed roofs built over them, stuff laying around. It was about as bad as you could imagine. A hopeless project. I told him, Dad, we gotta get that car going. What the heck. 2018 we had most of it back together, at least it looked like a car again. He put the engine together in the garage and we bench tested it and then bolted it in...Then we were blocked. We needed a mega rewire and there were still a ton of missing parts. It sat in the shop and birds pooped all over it and again it was a hopeless project.  

2020 hit and covid shut everything down and Dad was getting progressively worse with dementia. I found a shop in Tacoma that would finish the car (I was bingeing Netflix car rebuild shows) and so Mom and I decided to complete the project. 2021 the car was done and back on the road. Incredible. What a trip it was to be driving it again. Klunky, loud, smelled like gas, only goes about 50 MPH tops. It was heaven. I delivered the car back to San Juan Islandand shortly after I received the very last postcard from my father. It said "Couldn't have done it without you" xo Dad. I sure do like driving that car in the country. 

I think of my Dad and all his buildings and all his crazy ways. He wasn't perfect but I sure do love him. He really loved to listen to Bob Dylan on repeat.

Driving In The Country was written by Jonas Haskins and recorded at Barndoor Studios by Bradford Button June 2021. This recording features the Low Hums lineup of Mike Bayer on drums and percussion, John Faryar on electric bass, Leland Corley on Vox Jaguar and myself, Jonas Haskins on guitar and vocals. 

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