This is a story to honour my parents. In the last post I told what happened in the UK, and that I almost lost my dad. When such a thing happens you realise how precious each moment is with the people you love. 

My dad is one of the most important persons in my life. Thanks to him I grew up with vintage cars. I still remember all the events and adventures I experienced with him. Those are stories that I will never forget. They made me into what I am right now, and what I am doing. 

Here is one of those stories we often think of. We had to bring a Bugatti Brescia of a friend to Rondoni in Carpentras is the south of France. We delivered the Brescia with the friend’s Iveco light truck, but since the Iveco didn’t have a very strong engine we were mostly driving under the lee of other trucks and busses. While on our way I always loved to listen to my dad’s great stories about cars, especially the barn find stories! The upcoming post will be the first story I posted on CRANKHANDLEBLOG, one of my dad’s great barn find stories.

Anyhow, back to the Iveco. We did not make it to drive in one day to Carpentras, so we had to find a hotel in a remote place. It is of course risky to park an open truck somewhere with such a special car loaded. I searched in the little book Logis de France and found something. Early in the evening we drove to the hotel, but it seemed a bit further from the motorway than we had expected. After about 20 km we took a smaller road in a village. From there we went up on a mountain road, and after several kilometres the road became unpaved. At the sides there were goats grazing along the road. Much later we saw a sign saying; “garde courage”, which means “keep smiling” and a drawing of a goat’s head next to it. We laughed about it, but at the same time we started feeling quite uneasy, because the road became worse and worse. This culminated in an absolute hairpin in which we got stuck! The hairpin wa so tight and steep that the Iveco couldn’t make it around. We simply lacked engine power to get thru the turn. My dad was sweating and trying everything he could to get the Iveco to move forward. We were hanging with the back of the truck above the abyss, and so did the Brecia sitting on top of it. After 15 minutes my dad wasn’t so sure anymore if it was possible to get out of this adventure. Then all of a sudden he had the Iveco where it needed to be, and there we went again! What a relief. This was so incredibly scary! Luckily it was all worth it, because the hotel, although so remote, was excellent. This was one of those stories that I will never forget, and of course there are plenty more such stories with my dad. 

Since I always joined my dad, I was always that little girl who was there too, but I didn’t like that. Something had to change. At a certain moment something changed as I was busy with CRANKHANDLEBLOG. I used to be the daughter of Hans Veenenbos, and now my dad is the father of Rose Atalante. He really likes this, because my success pleases him, obviously. My dad really helped me to grow into this world. He gave me the inspiration, tips, his precious books, his network, he promoted CHB and so on. We searched together for a nice vintage car for me, and still he always helps me when I need advice. Damn, I am so grateful to have such a dad, I am so grateful. My mother is as important to me. She loves to see me busy with what I like doing so much and always supports me as well. This is such a blessed feeling.

My parents are proud and know that I am so motivated, and my dad is happy to have a daughter who is sharing his great passion, and now also a kind of son... which is Maciej obviously. 

Thank you mom and dad, for always supporting me and to always believe in me, also in the hardest times. You both mean so much to me, and I love you both so much!