Tracey Prather 1972 Spitfire

Ahhhh….my love for British cars goes all the way back to 1975, when my older brother traded in a 1967 Pontiac GTO for a brand new MG Midget. I was 6 years old when this orange beauty came to live with us. I remember begging my older brother to take me up a mountain, so we could turn off the car and coast back down. I remember sleeping behind the back seat when my brother was stuck babysitting and also had a date. I remember the smell, and feeling like I was flying. Sadly, the next year, my brother married and a baby was soon on the way. The orange Midget had to be sold for a more family friendly car for his new family. I felt as though I had lost a car, but in a sense, I also had lost my older brother.
When it came time to buy my first car at 16, my father wisely chose not to allow me to buy a little British car. Instead, we bought a two-seater Ford which was only two years old with low mileage. What could go wrong? Does anyone remember the lovely 1982 Ford EXP? Three years and three motors later, I was in college and sold it. I bought my first MG Midget with the proceeds. Luckily, I had learned a bit of mechanics from my first car, and through college managed to keep my Midget running quite literally on duct tape and paper clips. One icy December day I was driving back from college when I topped a hill and faced a long line of 18 wheelers in front of me, with a long line of them behind me. I chose to take the car to the median, and flipped it. I remember feeling the car leave the ground, laying down and holding on to the shifter. I walked away without a scratch. Oh how I missed that car!
A few years later I bought another little beast…a 1975 red version of my brother’s old car. She was a mess. Bad engine, bad transmission, bad clutch…you name it, over time I replaced it. At 30, I decided I needed a tattoo. Nope, I wasn’t the flower or butterfly kind of gal. I brought in my MG key fob, left with a tattoo of an MG logo on my right ankle. Then, I became a mother, and gasp! I needed a family vehicle. I went through a series of non-descript SUV’s, and lost my love of driving. I totted kids back and forth, and dreamed of another convertible.
A few years ago, as my oldest began driving himself around, I decided to look for another little British car. My budget allowed me to move past the rubber bumpers of my youth, but just barely. I couldn’t find a Midget, but I found a lovely Smurf blue 1972 Spitfire, with a Monza exhaust. It’s a ridiculous little car; there’s no sneaking up on people, you hear and see it coming from a mile away. But, it takes me back to a simpler time with my big brother, when I all I did was dream about being an adult.