I called for mostly clouds – it was mostly sunshine. I said yesterday that should this happen¹, we’d get into the 70s. That part came true.
When the time came to head to work, Helaine followed me. I opened the car door and as I was about to slide in she said, “Put the top down.”
Again, she is the insightful one in the family.
I hadn’t even thought about it. It’s been at least five months, maybe six, since the top went down. For the last six years my main car has been this little convertible. A car that, for all practical purposes, is impractical in the Northeast.
I put my suit coat in the trunk, engaged the trunk’s safety switch and flipped a red switch between the driver and passenger’s seats. As motors started to whir, the trunk lid opened up, the cars roof folded and slid into the abyss. Then the lid closed.
The ‘carmometer’ read 56° as I pulled out of the garage, By the time I was on the hill, racing down to the main road, it had equalized with the outside air and was in the mid-60s.
I turned the radio on and turned it up loud. It was perfect – Don Henley’s Boys of Summer was playing.
Your choice of radio programming, as my daughter has told me, is much more critical when you’re driving with the top down. You don’t want to be listening to something that’s unhip, or something that’s too hip for me. There is a musical sweet spot to find.
Forget about talk radio or all news. It’s a top down no no.
The high point, temperaturewise, of the trip was on I-91 in North Haven when it briefly hit 70° before retreating to the mid 60s in New Haven.
OK – I’ll admit it. These temperatures are actually too cold for the top down! Remember the wind chill. Though the windshield blocks most of the breeze, there’s some and so you’re cooler than the thermometer would imply.
There is a way around this. It’s the secret of every convertible owner. You turn the heat all the way up and blast it. My car also has heated seats. Those go on full.
Convertible compatible days are much too infrequent here in Connecticut. You’ve got to take advantage of every one.
¹ – As a rule I don’t say what will happen if my forecast is wrong, but this particular one had a decent probability in busting as far as clouds were concerned. Not every forecast has an equal degree of difficulty.