Marvel the Mustang

Today I am remembering my MOST favourite childhood toy; Marvel the Mustang. What brought up such nostalgia, you ask?

Let me tell you.

This week John has been driving his son and his son’s friend up to Big White Ski Resort every day except yesterday. They’re up there again today and they’re back up there tomorrow. It’s a great chance to enjoy some wonderful skiing while conditions are, by and large, still pretty nice. I’m not a skier anymore (and to be honest I never was but I pretended for a while) so I’m at home. Tomorrow, I have a hair appointment and so for the first time in months, since John has his car, I’ll be taking my car out for a spin.

Patience, I’m getting to the Marvel connection, honest.

Let’s go back a bit…

Late last fall, still being new here, we weren’t sure what to expect for winters in this area. Would there be lots of snow? Just a little? Does it stick around? So when we were deciding on winter tires (which are legal requirements here in BC) we made the decision to only put tires on one of our cars; John’s. My car (Annie the Audi as I like to call her) is a convertible so not well suited to driving in the winter anyway.

Sadly, Annie has been tucked away in our garage all winter. I say hi to her occasionally and assure her I haven’t totally forgotten about her.

I’m joking.


Anyway, we purchased Annie not long after we arrived here in the Okanagan. Back in Toronto, the transit system is more than good enough to only need one car (for our lifestyle anyway) and we did very well with just owning John’s car. Notice I didn’t say the TTC (Toronto Transit Commission) was ‘great’ because as any Torontonian will tell you, it kinda sucks. It is a system that has been outgrown by the city it is supposed to support many times over and struggles daily to keep up to demand. But I forgive it that. It is still miles beyond what is available here.

Just wait, I really am getting to Marvel.

Annie is my first convertible but before her, I long have insisted that any car I own include a sunroof. There are few things that are as fun as driving down a country road or highway, windows down, sunroof open and music blaring as loudly as the car speakers will allow. I just love it. Hairstyles be damned, it’s worth every tangle!

And back a bit farther…

Going back even farther, I spent a year learning to ride horses (now you’re starting to see the connection?). It was the year prior to the birth of my second son and it was something I had wanted to do since childhood. The first time I got into the saddle, I knew I would love it as much as I had imagined. Over time, I progressed from walking to trotting to canter and eventually to jumping. And each time as my beautiful mount went faster, my elation soared. The wind in my face, the freedom of movement without the cage of a vehicle around me. And the feel of this wonderful creature moving so effortlessly and yet so gracefully below me. LOVE.

I have always loved horses, so much so that as a child, for Christmas every year my wish list to Santa included a horse. I would lay awake on Christmas eve as long as possible, waiting hopefully to hear the sound of a soft whinny in the living room. Look, I was little and I had a great imagination. And one year, I got my horse. Sort of.

The glorious arrival of Marvel the Mustang

I don’t remember opening Marvel the Mustang* but I do remember riding him up and down our driveway and back and forth in front of our house. For hours. I loved Marvel. Oh, how I loved him! As far as I was concerned, I was riding a real horse and he was carrying me swiftly across the countryside, never tiring and always satisfied with a gentle pat and big hug at the end of our adventures.

Which brings me full circle back to Annie. I’ll take her for a spin today and although it’s far too cold to have the top down, and the wind in my hair, I know those days are not too far off in the future. And when they come, I’ll be out there with music rocking and my mind fondly remembering all of the wonderful chargers that came before, starting with Marvel.

*I don’t expect you to just take my word for how wonderful Marvel was; please take a moment and view this commercial from 1969 and you, too can marvel at Marvel.

Want to help Ukraine with a charitable donation? There are lots of organizations to consider; here is just a couple. Please do what you can.

Canadian Red Cross Ukraine Humanitarian Crisis Appeal

Canada – Ukraine Foundation

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