Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

The pick-up truck March 23, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 5:00 AM
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The pick-up truck that inspired this most, photographed Saturday afternoon in West Concord.

The pick-up truck that inspired this post, photographed Saturday afternoon in West Concord, Minnesota.

IT’S ICONIC SMALL TOWN. The pick-up truck parked along Main Street within view of the grain elevator.

By my definition, a pick-up serves as a farmer’s all-purpose vehicle. Bags of seed corn piled in the back. Squealing pigs penned for market. Fence posts slid across the bed. Must-have auction purchases tossed in the back.

My image is based upon memory. Yesteryear. My Dad’s red-and-white 1960s vintage pick-up, replaced later by a newer one.

This is a late 1960s Chevy.

This is a late 1960s Chevy.

You can have your shiny new hulking pick-up trucks. I’ll take those aged by history—by the weight of a farmer sliding onto a cracked seat, springs groaning, his seed corn cap nearly brushing the cab interior.

Farmer or not, I don't know. But I told this guy I liked his truck. He bellowed out a big, "Thank you" before firing up the truck.

Farmer or not, I don’t know. But I told this guy I liked his truck. He bellowed out a big, “Thank you” before firing up his unmuffled truck. And just as I shot this frame, a much newer pick-up truck rounded the corner behind him.

I’ll take muddy Red Wings planted on floorboards, grease-stained fingers gripping the steering wheel, smell of cows lingering.

Roll down the windows to the wind. Crank the radio to ‘CCO. Bounce along the gravel road, dust rolling behind in a cloud.

© Copyright 2015 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


26 Responses to “The pick-up truck”

  1. Almost Iowa Says:

    A great ode to an icon of rural america.

    The best thing ever said about the pickup truck was, “Geez Dad, I have a date tonight. Can’t I use the car insead?”

  2. Missy's Crafty Mess Says:

    Sounds like a country song.

  3. Todd Carver Says:

    One of the first things I noticed about this picture is the Collector plate on the truck. Most wouldn’t view this truck as a “collector” by definition. But it sure is!

    • I agree, Todd, although I’ll admit to not noticing the “collector” plate. It was the resemblance to my dad’s pick-up truck and the meaning of the pick-up to rural Minnesota that drew me to photograph this vehicle and small town scene.

      Thanks for stopping by. I have many more sweet surprises coming from West Concord.

  4. Jackie Says:

    My mom’s home town! Almost looks like that could be my uncle in the front seat of that pick-up, but I dont even know if he owns one? Anyway i like that truck…it’s got character 🙂

  5. Littlesundog Says:

    Oh this brought back memories!! My Dad never owned a new truck. He had a lot of old beaters, but they had character and they were easy to work on and mechanic. Not so with today’s trucks. Each year, one of my favorite laughing moments was opening that floor vent (that was the air conditioning!) after a long winter and all of the dirt and debris blasting into the cab of the truck!! Better not have your mouth open!!

  6. hotlyspiced Says:

    What a wide street! I love old cars too as does my husband. Your image is like a scene out of a movie xx

    • Well, then you would love small town Minnesota because this scene is quite common around here. And, yes, that’s one wide street. You can stand in the middle of it and take lots of photos without fear of being struck by a vehicle.

  7. Sweet Posy Dreams Says:

    I’m with you — old trucks are great. New is not so bad, except so many of them are gigantic monstrosities.

  8. The grain elevator may have been in his rear view, but the grain alcohol seemed to be in his clear view..lol

  9. It looks very much like rural Ohio..love the city hall building! Its very deco..

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