Monterey weekend was brief for me this year. Brian and I drove down to Big Sur in his Junior Z on Thursday afternoon to stay at Trevor’s house, which would be our launch pad to the Concorso Italiano at which Brian had signed up to show his car. We drove highway 1 from Half Moon bay all the way to Big Sur. Just north of Santa Cruz we drove under the smoke/dust/ash/steam cloud from the Bonny Doon area fire, which was ominous in a post-apocalyptic way (see picture below).
No Monterey weekend is complete without a $9.25 tour of the 17 mile drive so we hit it on the way down as well. About 10 miles into it I spotted the car you see below. Photographers were crawling all over it and spectators had gathered. I came away with a few iPhone shots and a lot of curiosity. The car had a Ghia badge and a 5 inch turbine exhaust port right in the middle of the back.
Imagine if the future we were promised was the future we got. Instead of Camry’s and Ford F150 trucks my commute would be populated by vehicles like this. A later encounter informed me that this was Streamliner X “Gilda” built by Ghia at the request of Chrysler.
Note, well, note a lot of stuff really. Door handles are out of some ‘Jimmy Rocket-boy’ type comic, gauges, louvers, windows, you name it, all of it is pretty amazing. It is said to have a normal engine now, though Giovanni Savonuzzi designed the body around a turbine.
So Trevor works at Post Ranch in Big Sur. Brian and I went to the restaurant for a cocktail and to establish the lay of the land and three hours later we exited having ‘thrown down’ and gotten the evenings fixed price meal along with a bottle of Nebbiolo and some cocktails ($$$$$). I could have slept on a wood pile I was so full and beat. Breakfast was at Deet Jens then we headed up the coast to the Concorso.
Brian’s exhibitor confirmation didn’t have a check in time or anything and naturally there was one and yes, we missed it. We went to exhibitors entrance and were told to go to Will Call, which would be found at the end of a series of right and left hand turns with a lot of slow moving traffic in between. We went to will call and they looked at us funny, explaining the exhibitors entrance was the exact reciprocal of the series of right and left hand turns we had just taken and hey, by the way we were two hours too late to exhibit anyway, so go park and walk in. Some frustration ensued because clearly no one knew anything beyond their little task, which they were anxious to get back to. In the interest of getting on with things we parked and went in.
The first time I went to Concorso it was great because not much else was going on that day and essentially everyone and everything I wanted to see was under the same roof, with only one, albeit steep admission price to pay. This year there were two parallel events (Italian cars, concours, golf courses, $14 beers) along with a third similar, though ‘catch-all makes’ type event. If I wanted to see everything and everyone, I would have to use three times the sun block and pay three equally steep admissions.
Franky disappointed, we headed home after about two hours of enduring bad AND way, WAY too loud music while looking at a bunch of cool, though mostly unremarkable cars. I admit, the BAT cars were there, but I can go see them for $10 in peace and quiet at the Blackhawk museum whenever I want. That Ghia streamliner was there, which would have amazed me, but that puddle of amazement was drained the previous afternoon. I thought about driving back down to the LeMons show and Pebble Beach show, which is always fantastic, but I ended up working on my TI.
While at the Concorso I talked at length with a guy about Lamborghini Espada ownership, who didn’t have anything to say that discouraged me from seeking one.
Look for a small set of pictures before long from the weekend and a post to catch you up on the TI once I figure out how to get the pictures ou tof my iPhone that doesn’t take 2 minutes each.