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49 Dodge "Little" Hearse PDF Print E-mail
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49 Dodge "Little" Hearse
The Hearse Chronicles
Loading the Little
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Rusty Crusty
Last Ride

Hearse Chronicles Part Tres

torontoOK, so here we are in Oshawa, all chained and strapped (whoo, sounds kinky) and ready to head South. Actually more west then south, but you get the idea. At this point, it's about (aboot) 7PM or so. I want to make the US Customs late at night, to hopefully avoid long lines like we saw heading up. (Cuz I KNOW we are gonna get the full monte hairy eyeball with THIS load). Except for the RedHead's and my amazement with the suicidal tendencies of Ontario's drivers, the trip to the border went well, no real issues to speak of. We stopped at a Red Lobster to have a celebratory dinner (crab legs, mmmmmmmmmm). Now, lemme just stop for a moment to give you all this news-flash: If you want to keep a low profile, do NOT have a rig like mine...with a 58 year old hearse on the back...that still says on the doors "The Tombstones, Owen Sound Ont". Pretty much anybody that saw it...that had the courage to approach us ( I was running close to 38 hours up at this point, with a couple catnaps in there, and pretty grease-encrusted and dirty. The RedHead on the other hand looked radiant as always, and no she's not reading this over my shoulder) asked with an expression of wonderment "What IS it...and what are ya gonna DO with it?"

So...dinner consumed, let's run/drive for the border. We hit the border, actually the line on the Peace Bridge, at 1:15AM Sunday morning. At about 2 AM, I pull into the TRUCKS lane. Now, the choices available to me were "Cars, RV's and Buses <-----; and Trucks ------>. OK, I have a total GVW of 26,000 pounds, I gotta stop at weigh stations... I'm a truck! Also, the truck line was MUCH shorter. So.... the Customs drone at the window sez "Is this a commercial load?" Nope, sez I, I bought the silly thing...woe is me. His icy response" THis lane is ONLY for commercial trucks". Well geez, sir, it doesn't SAY that anywhere, and this IS a truck since I gotta stop at weigh stations, and gee I am heartily sorry for having screwed da pooch etc etc. "Park over there and go into Door number 2"

Great. Wunnerful.... I sense that I am in for it, and am bracing myself for the hellish bureaucratic gauntlet I am gonna have to run. Now, the cat I bought the car from had actually (on my frantic request on Thursday) transferred the title into his name, and so I had a bill of sale and a whole paperwork chain. The RedHead and I stroll into Door #2....

The fella behind the desk and I confer for a while, and he says "Well, we aren't gonna give you the import certificate since the car isn't running. Whenever you get the car running and restored, just go to Customs at Dulles Airport, bring the car, and they'll do the paperwork." Hmm. NOT! Sez I: "Um, OK, kind sirs, but Virginia has a law that sez I have to title a car within 30 days of purchase (and they can get a lil mean about that, not to mention fine me). This here bill of sale is dated *yesterday*, and I gotta have your form 7501 to title this here Canadian car in the states. Can I have something on Customs letterhead with your badge number, explaining this delay, so that in a couple years when I finish the restoration Virginia won't fine me?"

Sez he:" Hmmm. OK, because of your need to comply with your state's law, we'll do the form. We usually don't in these cases since people lose the form before they actually register the car, but we can do this." "Yay", thinks I. So, this other Customs officer and I fill out the papers, and says OK, lets go look at your car. Turns out, he had an auto-sound business in college, and the car they used as an advertising vehicle for their services was a 60's Cad hearse!!!!!!! So, he thought the Little-Dodge was most cool, and the whole process was pretty painless. Note to the purists: No, I did NOT get into a modified vs. stock discussion with him...since he held the fate of my latest project in his hands at that point.

We go back in, the RedHead and I get our licences back, and I leave with all the docs I need to title the car. Welcome back to the US, the USofA...


Photos by the RedHead

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