Those of you with children know the age-old travel game of counting cars on the highway. In my younger days, I counted purple corvettes. Volkswagon’s reintroduction of the VW Bug saw the return of Punch-Buggy –No-Punch-Backs.
While in Tuscany recently with my family, our days typically involved at least an hour of car travel to and from our destination of the day. Each day, my three kids, along with whichever cousin was along for the ride, would count the yellow cars. Any type of motorized vehicle counted, but they had to be yellow. Not amber, not flax, not mustard and certainly not golden. Yellow. While Italy may be known for its colourful people and amazing food, their cars are disappointingly grey, black or white. So the counting yellow cars game proved to be more of a challenge than usual, and I found myself helping them out by being on the lookout.
On our last day in Italy, we were traveling to Florence, about 45 minutes north of our resting spot, La Fattoria Romignano. Our road trip the day before had yielded a banner crop of yellow cars. The count was high, so there were equally high expectations for today counting the yellow cars en route to Florence.
My son was up to about 24 yellow cars by the time we reached the outskirts of the old town. Then it happened. I could hear the guttural noises emanating from my husband’s throat. He excitedly began started the play-by-play: “Coming up on our left hand side! Wait…wait…wait. Now! Look!”
Strapped to the back of a flat bed trailer truck was the supreme trophy of the yellow car counting game. We were witness to the mermaid of the deep, the unicorn of the forest, the elf of the North Pole. We saw a yellow Ferrari. After the ooos and ahhhhs, one of them said, “That’s just gotta count for extra!” This sighting was of particular importance, for we did not see another yellow car for the rest of the tri – or perhaps they just faded from our view!