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Chicagoland MG Club: Driveline
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  Chicagoland MG Club:Driveline
New Tales of the Mongrel
By Ralph Arata

"Report from a Prodigal Club Member"

2005 - what a year! The job has taken me all over the world, I celebrate my 21st wedding anniversary, am dealing with teenage daughters, started cycling (eat your heart out, Lance) and Murray (that stupid cat) will reach 21 years old and still tries to keep me awake at night! @%$##? However, he has given up urinating in the MG!?

We got new windows in '04. Something Susan and I have wanted to do for many, many years. We also got a new garage door - top-of-line Home Depot! Wow, excited over a garage door???? Old age is certainly a strange thing!

A new computer i.e. 4.2 gig megahertz, 500 meg hard drive, Pent 4 with hyper thread and hard wired for all my digital photography and movie burning. Cool man - what a year!

MG Club……..nothing to report! Nothing has happened. I haven't showed up! A major bummer. No meetings, no rallies (well, we did make Lands End anyway - Susan and mine's favorite), no business meetings and no Abingdon Weekend!!

I miss the club! I miss Tom, Barney, Reinout, Jake and Ann, Mr. Bill, Will etc, etc, etc…… I miss Old Speckled Hen. I miss Max's Golden Pheasant? I miss sitting in the back at the Monday meetings with a beer and the occasional cigar. I miss the reports and all the great stuff you hear at these affairs every month. I miss, I miss, I miss………!

The Mongrel itself is doing OK! Spent a winter sitting warm and cozy under its cover (battery charger in place) and behind that great, insulated, Home Depot garage door. It flunked the clean air test again but I am actually thinking about antique plates so I don't have to bother going through the "iterations" to get it to pass. They put in on the dyno this time and it appears it had to go thru all the testing of a new car. I will talk to Dr. Josefek before I do anything rash.

Susan and I walk a lot and talk about everything going on in our lives ……. and not going on, such as being active in the club. The job has been the issue and specifically the travel - out on Monday and back Thurs or (mostly) Friday. Sometimes out for 2 weeks at a time and sometimes 3 (the Asian trips) so I get to miss my weekends to boot! Time home has become precious.

On course, the newsletter arrives faithfully every month and I get to see what is and is not going on. Thanks Barney for his past contributions and to Bob for taking the Driveline baton!

Occasionally, with friends or business colleagues the issue of retirement comes up. I still have a few years to go but its' nice to talk about what Susan and I might do at that point. For me, priority #1 is to restore an MGB-GT (Mk II or III). Getting VERY active with the club is also high on the list. Perhaps even do some things on a national scale….who knows. MGs are still in future and probably even more so than in the present!

One thing is for sure and that as 2005 begins to wind down that things have to be different in terms of MG Club activity. I am already working on my New Year's resolution to attend at least 4 meetings (boy, that sounds lame but it sure beats zero meetings in 2005) and to get active again in the rallies. We did make the Land's End Rally this year, the Wisconsin Wine and Cheese tour and Abingdon so we're not entirely a lost cause.

They say that you simply must make time for the REAL priorities in your life……..after all, it's what makes your life! Family and MGs …..that sounds good to me!

More "Mongrels" to follow! - Ralph

©2005 Chicagoland MG Club, All rights reserved.