The excitement of meeting this iron maiden was off set by the rigor of a red-eye flight and the trepidation that she could be hiding under that beautiful façade a jackpot of misery from almost 20 years of inertia.

I expected a slow start of checking things, familiarizing, and unpacking and stowing items. But the Tin Man threw our suitcases in the back, fired her up, and put her in drive.

The Sportmobile at the mechanics

Broke Down and Blue: The Sportmobile and her first mechanical issue.

We were off!

And then we were not. The telltale smell of something burning, followed by the comment from the Tin Man, “We’ve got a shimmy,” at 24-miles in put us on the side of the road in search of a tow truck. In a brilliant stroke of luck, we coasted to a hot stop on the doorstep of a local, family-run mechanic who had the time to fit us in and a lift big enough to get this heavy girl off the ground. Unloaded she tips the scales at 7,400 lbs.

We had to use Delco parts in a Ford, but got a two-year guarantee coast-to-coast and a brand new set of front brakes. Thank you, Michael at Tool Time.

We arrived at our first destination of Hockessin, Delaware (think DuPont) so tired we could barely speak, but not too tired to grab a beer before we tucked in for the night with friends from Tin Man’s youth.