Hey y'all: I spent a part of the day today working through the details of an interstate purchase, complicated by logistics forced upon us by Covid. This evening, I sat down and tried to capture how I am feeling. I don;t know if this will resonate with any other owners, or aspiring owners. But if there is an appropriate place for me to memorialize this, it must be here. I’m going to tell you a story. It’s a story with a purpose, but we’ll come to that later. This story starts in 1977. I was always fascinated…. Wait…. This story starts in 1970. I was born in the front seat of a car. Yeah, I imagine that probably had some influence on the eventual fascination I have had with cars. My Dad was a car guy. That I was born in a '69 AMX was no accident. I remember a little red Cortina that he had before I was 5 years old. I remember a yellow Capri (the German one) that he had in the back yard for years. He’d talk about all the things he’d do to, and with it one day. My older brother was a car-guy, talking regularly about his favorites, which, as I recall, were typically Italian. By the time I was 11, I had the requisite Lamborghini Countach on my wall. White. Beautiful. The Raging Bull was a beast I didn’t really understand, but it spoke to me anyway, as it did every pubescent boy of the era. I remember my brother explaining to me what he saw as the important differences between his superior Ferrari and my inferior Lamborghini. Let’s be clear: some would say that we lived on the wrong side of the tracks to have such aspirations; but countless youngsters the world over, from every background imaginable, had the same conversations, the same arguments; the same battle between we champions of the brands. And then; 1984. The Ferrari Testarossa. The Testarossa. I’ll never forget the first time I saw it. Rossa Corsa (racing-red, to the uninitiated) with Tan Cuoio interior. Those unmistakable strakes on the sides. The wide hips and narrow front. It somehow had defined “muscular elegance”. And the name: Redhead. Just saying it correctly, rolling the ‘r’s and the staccato ‘t’ brought animation to conversation. Down came the Countach, up went the Testarossa to its place of honor on my “west-side” bedroom wall. My love affair extended to all things Italian. Pavarotti became the ONLY singer that mattered. When my brother went to be a missionary in Italy, Italian language became God’s tongue. Italian restaurants were my favorite, and women weren’t beautiful unless they sported the dark hair and fiery eyes that I associated with Italian Women. (Fortunately for me and the eventual love of my life, many women of other Latin nationalities have this in common). Even the years I spent racing Ducatis was an odd extension of my aspiration to all things Ferrari- ish. The Ferrari became something more to me, of course. It transcended a mere car, or even an objet d’art or possession: it meant something. The tradition and history of Ferrari represented passion and effort; once an underdog, they quickly became the gorilla in racing circles. Or better: the Stallion. The sharp focus of Enzo making road cars ONLY to fund his racing. His famous quote that he was tired of building cars for young men, that only old men could afford. The uncompromising view of what a car should be became the cry of those moments where one stands unflinchingly and defies his detractors. And, it became just that for me; it became, in so many respects, the badge of what “success” meant for me. Not because success meant I was affluent, but rather that success meant I had achieved something without compromise. The few times I sat in a Ferrari as a young man, I’d smell the leather and feel the steering wheel, and say to myself “I’m from the wrong side of town for this”…. And then I’d stand, metaphorically, unflinchingly and say “that does not matter! I can do this too. One day, I will be able to do this”. Ferrari is an aesthetic; more than visual, or auditory, or even tactile: Ferrari requires all senses to understand, perhaps including some which aren’t named. But there are some essential elements. Like Love, you don’t always know what it is, but you know it when you feel it. The sound a Ferrari must make as it shrieks past you… if it does not make you blush, then you do not yet understand. A Ferrari should inspire awe, and humility. Automotive perfection, if you will, can inspire the same awe and humility as Michael Jordan’s athletic perfection, or Freddie Mercury’s vocal perfection; these are things which transcend mortality and make us aware that we are experiencing the divine. A line from the movie “Gladiator” sums it up: “I did not know men could build such things”. Perhaps now you get a glimpse into why I cried at “Ford vs Ferrari”, but not where you’d expect; no, I shed tears when they walked into the back room at Ferrari and I visualized the history that was swelling from there. Many times, over the years, I’ve doubted. I’ve wondered if I could do it. It no longer represented “success” for me, as I’d matured beyond that marker. But rather, it begged the question “can you do it?” And, many times, My amazing wife has told me “do it”. Each time she has “given her approval”, I’ve reflected at how irrational and immature it is for me to want it, and I’ve backed-out. The last several times this has happened, I’ve been frustrated with myself, and I’ve asked myself why I feel like I don’t “deserve” it. This was the wrong question of course, as nobody “deserves” anything like this. The right question should’ve been “what will things look like when you’ll allow yourself to do this?” Today I found out. Today I know what things will look like when it’s time. Make no mistake: I’m sensitive to the impracticality of the decision. I’m grateful to my wife who supports it and even encouraged it, once she got a glimpse of what it means to me. I’m humbled to arrive at this moment in time. I’m in awe at the workmanship of the factory, and of the previous owner who loved this car and cared for it to a standard I will endeavor to emulate. Today, all of my senses are heightened, and I am made aware of the culmination of passion, and effort. I’m telling you this story because there will be those who cannot understand; those who will judge me. I hope that I can live the ownership experience with enough grace and humility that this judgement will be transitory. And I’m telling you this story because I want my smile to be infectious. I want to share joy, even though the car itself won’t have that effect on anyone else. Perhaps my belief in dreams that come true will spread to others. Maybe my appreciation for my wife’s support will extend to continued pampering of her. Come; help me celebrate a dream. Let me take you for a ride, if you’re interested. Let me explain to you the history, or the tradition. I’ll tell you about Pininfarina, and Enzo, and Dino. I’ll teach you some Italian words with a French accent. Let me show my gratitude to the world for allowing me this honor. Folks on F-Chat; I'll add what I can to the community here. Thanks for accepting me as a relatively poor sap, reaching for something great.