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.
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.
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.
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.
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….
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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….
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.
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.
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.
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!!