I practiced shooting poison-tipped darts with a blowgun in the Amazon rain forest yesterday.
The monkeys have nothing to fear from my aim.
It was a bucket-list thing, taking my son Bradley to an eco lodge in the Amazon (La Selva) and then to the Galapagos Islands.
Our trip here came on the heels of another bucket-list experience, hosting SCM’s first 1000-mile rally for classic cars.
There will be a full report on SCM 30 in the December issue. But seeing 40 classic cars, many of them Alfas, touring 1,000 miles through my home state was a memorable experience.
As we move through the different stages of our life, we learn that quantifying and achieving our dreams becomes ever more important. Life is fleeting, and there is no better time than now to pursue the things you have always wanted to do.
I was 12 years old and a 6th-grade student at Parkside Elementary School in San Francisco when I decided to write my term report on Ecuador. In those pre-Internet days, I had to visit travel agents and talk them into giving me brochures. I went to the Encyclopedia Britannica and read everything I could on the South American country.
I recall being particularly fascinated by the Galapagos Islands, which led to a further exploration of Charles Darwin and his studies of evolution.
And now, half a century later I am at the Galapagos. As a precursor, Bradley and I spent three days at La Selva, reached only after a three-hour boat ride. We’ve looked at the reflections of our flashlights in the eyes of caimans — a relative of the alligator — lurking in the lake in front of the lodge.
We’ve gone on night hikes in the jungle and seen spiders bigger than my palm. We’ve learned how the native Indians sharpened their blow-dart spears against piranha teeth.
And as you read this, we will have landed in the Galapagos.
As SCM30 recedes in memory, I can reflect on the sheer joy I felt when 80 SCMers came together to enjoy 1,000 miles of Oregon back roads. For most of them, this was the first time they experienced Timberline Lodge, the Metolius River and McKenzie Pass.
For them as well as me, it was a celebration of vintage cars and glorious scenery.
SCM30 was the culmination of three decades — 360 issues — of publishing Sports Car Market. Each issue was hand-crafted and represented the best efforts the editorial and art department could produce.
Taking Bradley to the Amazon and the Galapagos is my way of rewarding myself for seeing this dream come true.
We can achieve our dreams; we only need to give ourselves the permission to do so.