Pass It On is a new, bi-weekly peek inside the heart and mind of Francis Pass…


Click the play button to listen to Francis Pass tell this story.

When I was a young man, I dreamed of owning a convertible.

And in 2003, that dream finally came true.

Patricia and I purchased a brand new ‘03 Thunderbird convertible. Black on black with a turquoise pinstripe down the side. I ordered it special. It took me a full year to get the car. But it was worth the wait.

man driving in car

I love driving around in my convertible with the side windows up and the top down. Now, I know that sounds strange, but with the windows up there’s less wind noise, so you can carry on a conversation and enjoy fresh air at the same time. Unless you’re in heavy traffic or drivin’ by a semi.

On a hot day, I put the top down and turn on the AC. And when the weather turns cool, I keep the top down and turn on the heater.

We’ve driven that T-Bird all over creation. We even took it out west following along the Lewis & Clark trail. But my favorite place to drive is right here in Southern Illinois.

man and woman in car driving

We love drivin’ through farmland. And, oh, the smells! When the top is down the smells are intense. That’s great when you’re driving through wheat and cornfields and freshly cut hay… but not so good when you’re driving by a pig farm. That’s when we put the top back up.

Treelined roads are nice, too, because they provide natural shade from the sun.

The sounds are wonderful, too. Birds, cows, crickets. You hear nature’s symphony.

And driving back on a moonlit night… well, there’s nothin’ quite like it.

man and woman waving

These are all the reasons I love driving my convertible. But if I’m being completely truthful with myself, the real reason is that it makes me feel young.

Then again, I’ve never really thought of myself as old. I still think of myself as that nineteen-year-old in Vietnam. Or that eighteen-year-old back here in the states…

And when I was eighteen, all I wanted was a convertible.

What makes you feel young? How long has it been since you felt that way?

Might I suggest a drive with the top down?

Be well. Stay well. Thanks for readin’…

Francis Pass

P.S. – My T-Bird is as close as I’ll ever get to a Corvette. I’ve always had a thing for those Corvette convertibles. If I’m ever lucky enough to have a ‘Vette, it’ll be a convertible. With a soft top, of course.