BREAKING NEWS: The Toad’s have been spotted in their bright red chariot over the weekend!  We’re going to break away from our running series “The Hollow’s Backyard” showcasing the Wooden Boat Festival at the Maple Bay Marina, in BC, Canada, to bring you a series of images captured this weekend.  This blog post is a long time coming and is mighty exciting for us to share with you.  We finally had a great weekend weather-wise, and were able to get our beloved 1987 Corvette Roadster all washed up and out to the beach for comprehensive photo shoot.  We’ll return to our series at the Wooden Boat Festival tomorrow.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

I am a lover of true American muscle cars, and have been my entire life.  I’ve owned somewhere around 145 cars in total, many of them ground poundin’, fire breathin’ V8 American muscle cars from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.  We’d like to introduce you to my dream car.  This is a 1987 Corvette Roadster, named “Beastie” here at The Hollow.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

In the late 80’s I had a room-mate, one of those way cool room-mates you sometimes get in life that’s just a blast to live with.  He also loved muscle cars and his favorite was the new embodiment of the iconic American sports car, the 4th generation Corvette named C4 by fans and enthusiasts.  He bought a very low mileage, one year old roadster, from California.  It was immaculate.  It was also my idea of an entire fortune, and to be honest I never thought in a million years we’d ever have one.  This is where my love affair started.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

All my adult life I wanted this car, very badly.  But being unable to afford one, I kept myself rather content with really nice and wickedly fast Nova’s, Camaro’s, Mustang’s, Dart’s…  you name it, if it had an American V8 in it, I might have owned one at one point or another.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

I compared every car I owned to that beautiful black convertible Corvette I used to drive that my friend owned.  All my cars never really met that standard, but I always told myself that one day, perhaps, we might get one too….

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

A few short years before my 40th birthday, I had a 1997 Camaro Z/28 convertible, the 30th anniversary for the Camaro.  It was all black and it was a really rare and it was a stunningly beautiful car.  Mrs. Toad and myself got married in that car, it meant a whole lot to us.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

One morning on my way to work in the Camaro, it was taken from us.  Someone decided to pull out blindly in front of me to cross an intersection as I was approaching.  I was totally doing the speed limit on a beautiful June day, with the roof down, minding my own business when I came to an abrupt and violent stop by this complete idiot driving this truck.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

The emergency personnel who responded to the accident were amazed to find me alive.   As a matter of fact, they were truly amazed to see me standing there with the driver of the truck, pretty much ready to send him to meet his maker.  He had no clue what he had just done; the Camaro was pretty much a very rare car that was not easily replaceable.  It was gone forever.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

I tried to replace the missing Camaro with a hot rod Mustang.  This kept me occupied for a few years, but it just wasn’t totally doing it for me.  Every time Mrs. Toad asked me what I wanted for my birthday or Christmas I’d promptly reply “a shiny red convertible Corvette”.  I was half-joking.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

As my 40th birthday arrived, one day Mrs. Toad asked me the age-old question again.  I responded as always.  She then did not miss one beat and said to me “well, then, you really ought to start looking around and see if you can find one you like.”

20 minutes later I got up off the floor.  And began to look in earnest.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

At this point in our lives, the kids had all left the house and it was just Mrs. Toad and myself.  Our vocations had changed over the years and we found ourselves in a position where it wasn’t a completely impossible idea.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

The problem here was the fact that I had fallen so in love with these cars, I really only wanted a very very specific car.  It had to be a 1987 convertible, with a specific set of option codes.  This was not an easy shopping list to complete, I can honestly tell you.  There aren’t many of these around anymore….

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

The Chevrolet small block 350 CI engine is my all time favorite engine; all my favorite muscle cars had one.  There was only a few years in the C4 generation that had this engine.  In 1986 Chevrolet released the new convertible model, there had been no convertibles since 1976.  In 1987 Chevrolet adjusted some of the suspension geometry to make the car drive a little better.  This was the car I wanted.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

The 1987 Corvette has a 350 CI small block Chevy motor in it, with roller rockers, aluminum heads, high compression pistons and factory headers.  It was also the first real car of its kind with Bosch fuel injection and anti-lock brakes.  The Corvette intrinsically also comes with such wonderful engineered items as a fully independent suspension and tons of custom crafted aluminum suspension parts to keep this car firmly planted while also requiring the smallest weight foot print possible.   It weighs just a little over a ton with the beautiful crafted fiberglass body and with the fire snortin’ 350 under the hood this car will still whoop a lot of cars today.

It’s bloody fast, and it’s bloody fun.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

Once I spent a bit of time compiling the list of option codes I really wanted our car to have, the shopping began.  It took several months of painful waiting to find this beauty.  On several occasions Mrs. Toad accompanied me to a local dealership to drive and look at a Corvette for sale; none of the local ones we found came close to what I really was looking for.   Desperation was setting in, and I almost bought a few that were not even close to what I was really wanting, the yearning for a ride in a Corvette was so very bad for me.

Finally one day I opened my web browser to my saved search and this gorgeous car was looking back at me.  I fell in love, head over heels.  I picked up the phone on the spot, and when I got through to the seller told them they had my car.  I needed no test drive or to look at it, if all the information listed was correct this was my car and all we needed to do was find a way to deliver it…

The car was actually living in the next province over.  We had to import it and get it all certified.  This took an additional few weeks.  These were some of the longest weeks of my life, next to waiting for my wedding to come after meeting my beautiful girl, Mrs. Toad.

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

1987 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster

It took me an entire lifetime to find my wife, who is my true soul-mate and best friend.  It took me 20 years to finally have the resources and wherewithal to find this car.  This story is truly a testament to the fact that if you really want something bad enough and dream about it, it will come true.   Tear a page out of the Toad’s book here, if you have a dream, something that really compels you, find the inner patience to wait for it to come true; it never has let me down yet in my life.

Thanks so much for taking the time to visit us here at The Hollow today, we really appreciate that.  If you have a car, boat or anything other item that is meaningful, and would like for us to come and do a comprehensive photo shoot for you, we’re available.  Please visit our “By Commission” page for contact details.

Thanks again, and please feel free to leave us any comments you may have as we really do love to hear from all our visitors!  Have a great week!!




  1. avatar Jim Denham says:

    Absolutely LOVE Corvettes and this one is a gem! Glad you finally got her Toad – good things come to those who wait, right? BTW, the AWE on the plate is very cool!

    • 🙂 Thank you so much there, kind sir! I totally agree about the whole “great things come to those who wait” bit there, Jim, I use that mantra in life all the time! Thanks so very much for popping by today, my friend, it’s really an honor to know that you’ve finally had a chance to see this elusive car I keep talking about!

  2. avatar A.Barlow says:

    First!

    Nice ride man! … and cherry red to boot! Get that bad-boy out on the coast with the top down and have a blast.

    • Thanks Aaron!!! If there’s one thing you can count on, it’s these 2 Toads hoppin’ about the island with the roof down in this baby! Really appreciate your visit today my friend!

  3. avatar Kristi Hines says:

    I can feel you have a lot of love for both your wife and your chariot! 🙂 Definitely an inspirational story! 🙂

  4. avatar Heather says:

    Awwwww Toad 🙂 this is my favorite blog post you have ever done! I might have even shed a tear..

    Glad those emergency responders found you alive!

    Cool car!

  5. avatar Chris Nitz says:

    Way to get the car 🙂 I expect to hear stories of you running moonshine, late night racing gone awry, and how you put hydraulics in that sucker. Okay, maybe not all of that. Great post Toad!

    • Moonshine and late night racing, eh?…. NO COMMENT fine sir!! LOL Just kidding, it’s a fast car and it begs to be driven, I can tell you that! REALLY appreciate your visit today Chris, thanks so much!

  6. avatar ChrisdMRF says:

    Dreams are what keeps us alive in the darkest moments, the 3am’s of the soul, as the bard once said “to sleep, perchance to dream, ay there’s the rub”

    Dream on old friend, or more accurately keep living the dream, it gives hope to the rest of us.

  7. avatar Fred Norris says:

    Toad loved the story,loved the images,especially # 5!It is great to hear you got the dream girl and the dream car.

    • My best friend helped me find my girl, and for that I am forever appreciative! The internet helped me find Beastie. All in all, I think we’re batting 1.000 here in this life! Thanks so much for your kind visit & comments today, Fred, we sure do appreciate that!

  8. I’m pretty sure I heard you say that you shuttle your guests around in this little gem when they come to visit the Toads, right? She is soooo pretty and soooo red. I love wishes and dreams that come true. Thanks for sharing a little about the members of the Toad family, portraits and all. Drive safely . . .

    • Indeed we do, Barbara! As mentioned before, our local brew pub has a table all reserved for us for when you come to visit! We’d be thrilled to take you around in the ‘Vette, that’s for sure!! 🙂 Thanks so very much for your kindness & support my friend!

  9. yup – great story, so glad that you got what you had always dreamed of, I have a similar car that I’d really like, but not quite a glam as this.
    Goes to show that if you work hard enough, dream hard enough and look hard enough it will happen. As Kevin Costner once said “Build it and they will come”!

  10. avatar Cathy Ross says:

    What a great story Toad…I’m a sucker for love stories and this was a double header! 🙂 and of course…now I can see why my GM photos mean alot to you!

    • To me the RenCen GM building is the holy mecca of the Corvette life-blood! Next to that, Bowling Green KT is my next holy land destination to visit; this is where Beastie was born in 1987. What fabulous comments you have left today, Cathy, we appreciate that more than we can express.

  11. avatar tom dinning says:

    Oh, Toad!! What a worry you are. You should meet my next door neighbour. All his life he has dreamed of owning a Lambhorgini. He now has it parked in his AIR CONDITIONED (YOU READ IT RIGHT) garage. He cleans it more often than he cleans himself. I’m taking piccies of it this week. I’ll post a few for you.
    I don’t understand cars. But I do understand obsessions. Now, the question I would ask is: ‘would you photograph and write about Mrs Toad in the way you have written and photographed about Beastie?’ And don’t lie to me. I’ll know!

    • Ah, yes, my dear friend. This is a fine question you pose today! First of all I really need to mention that a climate controlled storage area for our finely crafted automobiles is definitely in order. Unfortunately, our Beastie lives in an open garage, but she is always covered and pampered. As for your neighbor, I hate to say, but he needs a shower. As a matter of fact, I think I caught of whiff of him here this morning.

      Now, for the most important point. Mrs. Toad. She is very shy of the camera and I believe would wholeheartedly prefer to be a famous Toadess by living in the shadows. Never a more beautiful woman have I ever seen than her. Indeed, it would be my most delighted honor and privilege to photograph and share her with the entire world, and rest assured our love transcends time and space, so my musings would be entirely wrapped in prose and wonder. I am, indeed, the luckiest Toad that ever was and I try to tell her so many times a day. The very best day of my entire life is without peer; it was the day that she came down that isle in her white flowing gown, ready to accept me as her husband. Warts and all. Indeed, I would trade 1,000 Beasties for an evening in her company, without doubt.

      I really did enjoy your comments today, my good friend, your visit & support mean so much to us! Thanks Tom. 🙂

      • avatar tomdinning says:

        Toad; I think you’re in love, my man. And it ain’t with a red beastie, neither. Unfortunately you are mistaken. For it is I who is married to the most beautiful woman in the world. But for you, second best is all you’re ever going to know. Sorry about that. So, imagine what beauty would exist in the one place if they ever met. Why. it could be the end of ugliness forever. Shame about the rest of the blokes out there. They just have to put up with the left-overs.

        • I think you’re right, my good friend, I have all the signs and symptoms of being hopelessly in love. Madly and passionately, even. Is there any chance that your wife and my wife are long lost twin sisters? Seeing how we both assert to have found (and for me, even somehow talked her into marrying me) what we consider the most beautiful women in the entire world, it’s a fair question to pose. Maybe you guys should pop on up for a visit so we can test this theory out! 🙂

  12. avatar Tom Barnett says:

    What a great story and a great car! I’m red with envy;)

  13. avatar Jerry Denham says:

    You now own an “Automobile” instead of a car, Toad. Green with envy here. Gorgeous car and good for you.

    • Thank you so much Jerry! Please know you have a friend here; if ever you get a chance for a visit it would be my honor to rip the roof down and take you out for a fun burn!! Thanks so much for your visit & comments my friend!

  14. avatar Jim Nix says:

    wonderful story Toad, and of course great images, and truly stunning auto – drive carefully out there so you can keep taking great pics and sharing them!!

  15. avatar Kim says:

    Cute, Cute, Cute!

  16. avatar Jason Hines says:

    Very awesome my friend! I had the pleasure of driving one of those several years ago and I have to say that there is nothing quite like it! So much raw power and strength – how many tickets have you gotten in her? 🙂

    • Historically I ain’t no Saint when it comes to piloting muscle cars, but as I get older, my mellower side is starting to take over. This may be very hard to believe, but I’ve never been ticketed in Beastie! My other cars I can’t say the same for…. LOL Thank you so much for your kind visit & wonderful comments today, Jason, you really really made me smile big time here! Glad to hear you’ve had a chance to pilot one of these; I think that’s something everyone should experience at least once! 🙂

  17. Wow. You follow someone on Twitter, read his comments, read his blog, look at his photos, and you think you know him, at least a little, even though he uses a pseudonym and you’ve never actually met.
    This post reveals a side of you that caught me completely by surprise. How wonderful. If I had been asked to list my photographer friends in order of likelihood to have a muscle car fetish, and have owned MORE THAN 140 CARS!?!?, Toad, you’d be near the bottom. Actually, I can’t think of many who’d be near the top, but YOU’VE OWNED 145 CARS?!?! Including a pair of 1987 convertible Corvettes?
    Really?
    The Toads, with the Hollow and the storybook mythos and all that?!?!? Flabbergasting in all the most wonderful ways.
    This is awesome.

    • 🙂 You made my whole day, Mark! Thank you SO much for taking the time to read all that and then leaving these most wonderful comments. I couldn’t wait to share them with Mrs. Toad, who quite frequently has to endure messy hair due to my little obsession here, but that’s a whole ‘nother story…. Thanks you so very very much! 🙂

  18. avatar Jan Winther says:

    What everybody else said. – one comment though. 145 cars in lets say less than 30 years – you must be pretty rough on cars or never found the right one, until now.
    Great story Toad, great car.

    • Thank you Jan! It’s a little of both, to be honest. Some of the 145 cars were not great… one, in particular, was a beater I bought from a used car lot and drove it 30 feet before a connecting rod dropped out. I took my plates off and walked away, leaving it where it died. So, to make a long story a little shorter, not all my cars have been killer, fire-breathing muscle cars… I’ve had a few real pieces of junk, too. 🙂 And, yep, when I was a younger tadpole, I kinda had a bit of a bad reputation for how my cars fared in my hands, let’s just say. That’s from a time long ago now, our beloved Beastie is cared for like one of the family.

  19. Patience is the key to life. This was such an awesome story and I thank you for sharing it with me my friend. Your email was by no means perceived as spam. Good luck with your sweet Vette buddy!

  20. avatar Bob Byington says:

    Cool car and a great story. I am in fact considering an 88 roadster, red with 90,000 miles. It has been babied. The owner also has the Callaway badging exhaust and other stuff and I guess it could be made into a Callawy but unclear as to what that would take. It apparently is not a registered vin at this time. Not sure what they are going to ask for it. I have always wanted a Vette…

    • avatar ToadHollowPhoto says:

      Thank you so much for your kind comments here, Bob, coming from you my friend, that means an awful lot to us! I can honestly tell you that if you get that car, you will never regret it. I’ve had over 140 cars in my life and surprisingly enough this one has been one of the very best in terms of reliability and lack of expense to fix things. Sometimes parts can be hard to find but if you’re connected in with a great mechanic, this shouldn’t be a problem in the long run. The 350CI small block Chevy engine is a great platform that has the possibility to deliver YEARS of enjoyment for you. Our car here is just about to brush past 250,000KMs on the odometer and even though it’s far from show ready, it’s a car that we drive almost everyday and truly enjoy!! My only advice to you is to run to buy this car you’re looking at, don’t walk. LOL 🙂

      Thank you ever so kindly for all your friendship & support here, Bob, that’s a huge honor for us that means so much!