I Loved My Truck: An Ode to Batou-san

Batou San was the name of my Ram 1500 Laramie which I bought to take me adventuring across America in late 2015. It carried me from Seattle to California to Florida to Maine and then back to California again. It was comfortable, beautiful, and powerful. I came to love my truck.

I am not a materialist by nature. I love few inanimate things. I love none of them as I love people. After all, they can’t love me back. But in so much as some objects become an integral part of my life and identity, I love them.

I was not a truck person. I’d scoffed at the silliness of owning such a truck in a city like Seattle. They are big, awkward, and they gulp down fuel like mad. Batou was no different in these regards. But I needed a vehicle that could tow my home and could take me into the backcountry of wild America. I needed it to do these things while keeping me secure and comfortable. Batou did these things for me.

And it was two weeks ago, that Batou did one last service for me, it saved my life from a drunk driver. One moment I was coming to a stop at a traffic light, the next I was being launched forward from a terrific impact to the back of my truck. It launched my rather massive truck into the vehicle in front of me creating a Ram sandwich of sorts. The back of the truck was staved in and the bed buckled. The front fared better but the damage was still significant. A witness estimated the vehicle that hit me was traveling near 50mph on impact.

My only injury was a bruised arm where I tended to rest it on the door while driving. Batou San’s damage was deemed beyond repair, a “total loss” as the insurance company describes it. While his mighty V8 heart was not broken, his back was, and the repair bill would be greater than his value on the open market. Such as it was, I had to bid farewell to my faithful steed two days ago. You were taken before your time, my glorious friend. Thank you for your service!



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