Contributed and owned by Tara Bush, Longwood
In 1984, just before my 16th birthday, my Father offered me a Horizon as my first car. Not much of a car guy but wanted something dependable and cheap for his little girl. The guys in the neighborhood had cool cars and I wanted one too, plus I lived down the street from the drag strip. So I chose option two; decline Dad's dependable car and got Mom approved 1967 Chevy II Nova wannabe race car with some backyard modifications. With little money and knowledge, I spent most of my time fixing the car instead of driving it. I only once got to the drag strip and the exhaust fell off.
About a year later, my Mother thought it best to seek out a more reliable car. A 1966 Fairlane GTA caught my attention but that big 390 just wasn't what Mom had in mind. She took one look and said “NO WAY”. I then happened upon a super shiny black 1966 Chevy II Nova driving past, of course I followed it into the grocery store parking lot. The lady had just put it up for sale, but $3500 was a fortune at that time. Once I finally decided that I wanted it, and would work hard to pay for the Nova, it was too late… the car was sold.
Still sulking over my misfortune, I was awaiting my soon-to-be stepfather's arrival for my 17th birthday celebration. And to my extreme surprise, he was driving the black Nova down the street toward my house. My mother was the one who had bought it! But first I had to change the fuel pump before I could try the car out. Since it was equipped with the original six cylinder engine, I could not get into too much trouble…and I believe that was why my mother spent her hard earned savings for it.
I showed the '66 Nova every weekend throughout Ohio, drove the '67 during the winter until it became yard art and purchased another '66 Nova as my Monday thru Friday work/school car. All this before my 19th birthday. Not only did I stay out of teenage trouble, I learned many invaluable lessons from cruisers much older than myself.
30 years later, not much has changed. The engine has been detailed, the custom interior was changed to the original style, the paint has been touched up and the factory air conditioning has been reinstalled. I have built up a small collection of show cars: my late stepfathers 1958 Corvette, 1967 Shelby GT500, 1970 Cuda AAR, 1957 Bel Air, 1967 L79 Nova, and a rare 1967 Acadian Canso. But my black Nova still remains my baby.