By on September 12, 2008

Sometimes being a Pistonhead isn’t that wonderful. I’ve spent the last 24 hours securing or moving fourteen cherished automobiles to higher ground before Hurricane Ike hits the city of Houston.  Its been crazy: one dead battery with an even deader alternator, a  bleeding heater core and several trips to an elevated parking garage. By Thursday night,  I had a (poorly chosen) escape pod for my evacuation: a 1972 Continental Mark IV. But, after a months-long slumber, I fired up the triple-black beauty and it instantly idled like a new car. Too bad I didn’t plan on the Mark’s quarter tank of gas. Or an eighth, depending on how cranky the gauge acted when you came to a stop. I waited in feed lines with SUVs, compacts, pickups and crossovers only to have pumps run dry, which was more than a little terrifying given the big Lincoln’s OPEC-inspired heyday. Can I make it to the suburbs on congested roads, in a 7.5 liter Lincoln that gets 9 MPG on a good day? Thankfully, there was no traffic this morning, so I gently wafted to safer territory on the Mark IV’s reassuring haunches. It was a throughly relaxing ride. And now I’m ready for this damn storm.

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15 Comments on “Hurricane Ike...”

  • avatar

    I miss so many things about my native home of Houston, but I can’t say that hurricanes are are among them. Best of luck.

    Houston. It’s worth it.

  • avatar

    Good luck from Denison, Texas. I hope all is going well.

  • avatar

    Hope you are safe and staying dry

  • avatar
    Sid Vicious

    OK – now that the cat’s out of the bag you have to give us a run down of the fleet. And let us know how well they fared.

    Good luck.

  • avatar

    Don’t take the “babies” too far from the mother’s teat! (Houston)

    Good luck.

  • avatar

    You should move to Ontario. We don’t get hurricanes. Or tornadoes. Or (many) floods. Or (many) forest fires. Or earthquakes. All we get is a bit of snow… for 6 months of the year…

  • avatar

    Awwww. Fourteen cars to move, then you choose to flee Ike in a gas-guzzling poster car for all that ailed Detroit in the 1970s. How cans someone with so much money act so stupid?

    I hope you get out safely, but next time try planning your exit. This storm was not a surprise.

  • avatar
    Jordan Tenenbaum

    Beautiful car, Sajeev. Stay safe.

  • avatar

    Hubba hubba, I guess if you gotta evacuate, you might as well evacuate in style. That is a beautiful car, and I’m glad to hear that you got out safe.

  • avatar

    Flaming Sajeev is not cool, fotobits.

  • avatar

    While the Lincolns and Thunderbirds of the late sixties through late seventies are deservedly icons of excess, and a kind of car that was effectively a dinosaur by the end of that time, they were pretty well-built, well-engineered excess, and for what they are, beautiful cars in their own way. There are a heck of a lot of them still on the road, and I suspect that future generations will consider them classics of their time.

    Yes, I’m biased – I have a ’67 4dr suicide-door T-bird in the driveway with a now shot engine – but damn, they’re solidly built, even if the accessories can be a little fussy these days.

  • avatar

    And to think I was just bitching about how humid it is right now in southwestern VA. That Lincoln is a lovely car and now I don’t feel so bad for wanting a 60’s Imperial. Good luck Houstonians.

  • avatar

    It may get lousy gas mileage, but you’re certainly fleeing the storm in style! Hope you and your collection get through it unscathed.

    BTW, I also would be curious to know what other cars are in your fleet, and perhaps how they fared the storm.

  • avatar

    I just got power/internet at the folk’s house, so a belated thanks to everyone. Except fotobits, that is.

    1. fotobits: I planned everything for 14 cars, 2 houses and my apartment over the course of three days, so you’ll have to forgive me if I think your comments are completely out of line. Sure, I didn’t do a “gas inventory” for all cars before I started moving them. If you can juggle ten balls at the same time you are a better person than I. And if you read the blog, you’d see that the plan worked, I made it to my folk’s place with no problem.

    2. No I’m not listing the family’s cars this time, but I sure wasn’t gonna bait Ike with our Mercury Cyclone. That and it has a carb problem (sticky choke?) that I didn’t have time to mess with.

    3. lprocter1982: yeah, but you get snow and salt every year, without fail. At least from what I saw in Toronto. No thanks. :)

    Turns out the Mark’s gas gauge was pretty accurate, maybe the sending unit was changed sometime after 1972. And all is well since gas stations are replenished on a daily basis. The city did a good job this time.

  • avatar

    And yes, all the Mehta’s cars did just fine. Can’t say the same for the ‘rents house, but its pretty minor.

    Because the city all but shut down after Ike, the Mark IV got enough me-time to get polished/glazed/waxed. Now the neighbors have proof that I’m nuts.

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