On the Road

Some people notice you some don't when you are driving down the road in a 3-ton military truck. Many don't really notice that if it is new or old, many times I'm sure they mistake antique military vehicles for current military.

Above Beauty is Tail End Charlie on a convoy of trucks WWII military vehicles heading down to a D-Day commemorative day at the Boston Navy Yard Historical Park.

This is my co-driver for Parades a bear in uniform it takes people a while to realize that the truck is right hand drive and that it is not a person in a bear suite driving. The bear is animated so that he waves, peoples reaction that they have been waving to a stuffed animal is interesting most laugh and continue to wave other look somewhere else and try to pretend that they weren't really waving to the bear. Children universally seem to be like him. The Bear has been stopped by the police twice.

Driving a strange (and to be charitable CMPs are strange) looking vehicle on the roads here in the states does result in some funny things happening. When I first got my HUP on the road some 20 years ago a number of times found myself being followed by a police cruiser. Generally after they had followed me for a mile or two I would pull over and stop, never got a ticket, but often did have a pleasant time telling them what a CMP was. In the last few years the reasons for being stopped or followed by police have been pretty funny. The last two stops have both related to the right hand drive and the fact that I have a parade bear that rides in the left hand front seat for parades. The bear is human sized dressed in a Canadian Army uniform the bear is animated to wave in parades.

Riding in the left seat the bear has caught the eye of a trooper and local police officers. The trooper was passing in the opposite direction and pulled a "U"y to come up behind me with his lights on. Then he came up to the left side of the truck to ask the bear for his license and registration. When I said from the other side of the truck "yes officer can I help you" he just sort of waved at me and said get out of here as he walked back to his cruiser. The only thing I could figure was that he was stopping me for driving in a bear suit figuring that it had to obstruct my vision. I always wondered if he ever told anybody he had stopped a stuffed bear.

The next time I was stopped again on the way to a parade I had pulled up to an intersection squared the corner so that I could see both directions from the right hand side. I could see a cruiser parked on the edge of the road up a ways. After waiting for traffic I pulled out made and made my turn. A little way down the road there were the blue lights so I pulled over. Again the officer walked up to the left side of the truck but this one realized that it was a stuffed bear and laughed. When I asked him why he stopped me he explained that he had been parked down road and that the driver, the bear, had not looked either way. So he was going to warn the BEAR to look both ways.

Our MV Club participates in 10 or so parades and displays each year, some are small town events such as Memorial Day in Fitzwilliam, New Hampshire where the viewers walk along beside the parade form the town common to the cemetery. (Below)

Or large parades like the Patriots Day Parade in Lexington Massachusetts

In displays the Bear draws attention to the truck and people then read the magnetic signs that explain that the truck is a 1942 Canadian Chevrolet built to serve with British Commonwealth Forces.

When displaying the truck at a meet I also have copies of the data sheet and vehicle history in clear covers that are magnetic so that I can just stick them on the side of the truck, generally I put them all on the shady side of the truck so that one side is left clean for photographing.