The Purchase of a 1937 Packard Linousine

In 1953 I had just purchased a 1951 Packard four-door sedan and was enjoying it very much. One day, when I brought it to be serviced at the Packard dealership, the service man told me that a Mrs. Arthur Usher was selling the 1937 Packard limousine that had belonged to her deceased husband. Arthur Usher had been a vice president at The American Locomotive Company until he had retired several years earlier.
“She wants four hundred dollars for it. But, it’s not worth that,” he said. “I’d offer one-fifty.”
Being enthralled, I contacted Mrs. Usher and went to see her at her stately home in Niskayuna. I was escorted into the living room by the butler. After waiting ten minutes, Mrs. Usher entered and we began a discussion concerning the sale of the car. At her invitation, she and I strolled to the two-car garage where an old Packard roadster and the limousine were parked. It was a huge car, in like-new condition, with side mounts and a twelve-cylinder engine. The hood was a mile long. There were folding seats in the back. I fell in love with the car at once.
“Would you take one-fifty,” I asked.
Mrs. Usher adamantly refused. “The price is four hundred,” she said. In a huff, I left the estate.
At home, I told Sally how unreasonable the old crone had been. Why couldn’t she sell the car to me for what it was worth? I moped about the house, the limousine constantly in mind. The service man had said the car was not worth the outrageous price she was asking. He should know what it was worth. Why was she being so unaware?
Sally observed as my spirits dwindled. I wanted that car. It was something that is realized only in dreams. It had been so close to my grasp and now I must reconcile myself to its loss.
A week went by and my mood worsened. Indeed, it had changed to one akin to grieving. When I arrived home from work one evening, Sally said, “I have some news for you.”
“Yes,” I responded listlessly.
“I went to the bank and withdrew four hundred dollars from the savings account. I know you said this money was to be used only for emergencies, but I want you to buy that car.”
I cast off my pride and purchased it the next day.

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