Maybe I Needed to Bead the Bug

When I was a junior in college I came home for Easter break to find that my dad had heard my pleas for a car. There was an orange 1974 VW Super Beetle waiting for me. The only catch was that I needed to learn how to drive a manual transmission. (It’s amazing how fast I can learn something if the incentive is right.)

The idea was that a car would make it easier for me to get a job off-campus, allowing me to actually earn some money to pay my expenses if not my tuition.

That never really happened. Neither photo or journalism jobs paid a lot and, honestly, I could have gotten to most places I needed to go without a car, but it was a great car (even if it lacked a workable way to defrost the windshield) and in the next few years I drove it all over the state until the day came when I went to actually buy it from my dad.

He told me he it was his car and it was time for me to go out and find a (safer, more practical) car of my own.

Would he have had a different opinion if I had decorated it?

 When we came through the Denver International Airport in June we saw the Vochol exhibit. (Still happening through August 31 of this year.)
The show’s name derives from “vocho,” a popular term for the Volkswagen Beetle in Mexico, and “Huichol,” the common name of the Wixárika indigenous group. This Beetle is newer than mine, but it has the same vibe. Eight artists from two Huichol families “beaded” it using 2,277,000 beads.

I’ve seen beaded and embroidered Huichol textiles before, but a beaded car? That’s pretty crazy.

If I had been beading my car instead of studying during college, would my dad would have let me keep it?

For great Photo Thursday images from around the world, visit Nancie's Budget Travelers Sandbox and join in on the fun!
For more information on my trip to Denver and Keystone, check out my (still-in-progress) Colorado travelogue!


  1. Wow - I can't believe that it's beadwork on the car - it's beautiful and it must have taken ages to do!

    1. I can't even imagine how low it takes to do something like that - especially if you were doing it on your own! It's definitely better as a group project.

  2. This is so cool. I'm sorry I missed it when I sprinted through the Denver Airport in June. And I hear your on the photo and journalism jobs not paying much...if at all!

  3. I never take the time I intend to in order to see the airport art, but I knew I had to stop and take some time with this one!

  4. Very beautiful. After seeing these, I'm sure your dad would have let you keep the car.

  5. Wow! That's creative decorating I'd say. Wouldn't wanna drive it, but I enjoy looking at it :)

  6. Dad saw this and we are glad that you were studying!


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