C4 memory #4

Visualize a picture-perfect afternoon in northeast Wyoming. I am in the last of the best, a '95 ZR1, on the long trip home from Spearfish, South Dakota and last July's Black Hills Corvette Classic.

Four miles out of Newcastle on US14, I went left on WY150, the best kind of back road-two lanes, straight and westbound. Midway through third, I lifted for a sec. I needed music, so into the CD went an alternative band out of L.A. called "No Doubt", I flicked the volume full right and listened to its singer, one Gwen Stefani " 'Cause I'm just a girl, I'd rather not be. 'Cause they won't let me drive late at night." Bummer about that, Gwen, honey. You' missin' the *best* part.

I put my foot back down 'till I saw 125. Not real fast by ZR1 terms, but certainly a brisk, cruise speed for this road. Though it was arrow-straight with not another car for miles-and-miles; it was a bit rough in spots.

Sailing along at a buck and a quarter, I looked around and pondered, 'This Wyoming has got to be the real stuff of the American West: cowboys, horses, grassland, blue sky; plenty of wide-open road and best of all; no cops. I took a deep breath, listened to Ms. Stefani a bit more and accelerated to 135. God, I love this country!

In the distance, on the shoulder was a truck, a set of flat-rack doubles, and a bunch of people, so I backed her down about 40 mph. Seconds later, I'd closed enough to see they were loading hay what else would a bunch of cowboy-truckers be doing in the middle of Wyoming? As I went by at near twice the speed limit, I saw all six of their heads turn quickly, right-to-left. As I imagined their conversation, I chuckled. "Hey, Vern, lookie there. "It's one a them Carvettes. Golly, Billy-Bob, lookit 'em. He is really flyin'. Hey ain't that one of them zeeareones? What's so special about them anyway? "I heard the motor's got 32 valves you wish yer pickup had 32 valves, bud. Hey, throw 'nother bale up here will ya?" The LT5 howled as I back-shifted two gears, floored it. 'Cept for a couple of tiny towns, I didn't drop below 125 until I hit I-25 an hour or so later.

-Hib Halverson

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