Maiden Voyage

This is a funny story about an encounter with a female member of the Apache Indian tribe while playing a prank on an old established Winston Cup Crew Chief when racing in Phoenix, Arizona





These articles, stories and accounts of my life, as I recall them, and are copywrited. Unauthorized use will be pursued at my determination, to the degree that I am inclined. Any hard feeling caused by memories that don't match yours are unfortunate and you'll just have to get over it! Feel free to contact me if you have a request for their use.


Damn, it was hot! I should have known when we left home we were not going to get any relief from the high temperatures as long as we were engaged on this western tour, and there was no limit to the heat here in Phoenix, Arizona.

We had labored from the monotonous slow driving to break in the motor in the tow truck, that had just been rebuilt, and delivered at the last possible moment prior to our leaving. We had been instructed by the motor builder to drive slower than normal, to break the motor in, until we reached the Mississippi river . I was so damn happy to wake up and roll out of the sleeper to the sight of Vicksburg outside the window.

We pulled over and advanced the timing in the tow truck along side the road, then set out on our way to College Station , Texas with an increased vigor, actually looking forward to the first race of the annual western swing on the Winston Cup circuit.

We made it thru the Texas race with minor sheet metal damage, and had changed the motor before leaving the race track to one with a short track cam, saving the speedway motor for the race in Ontario , California , that followed the Phoenix race.

We had waited until arriving in Phoenix before changing the rear end gear, so it would be cooler than it was after we had just run a race. As I dropped the ‘pumpkin' onto my chest, and slid out from under the car , I glanced up towards the hillside between turn three and the Goodyear walkway that crossed above the track between turns three and four. The rising hillside that surrounded the race track from the dogleg on the backstretch thru the beginning of turn four was generally barren, with a s matt ering of cactus plants that you quite often see in the background of the typical western era cowboy movies. But as I glanced in that direction, a bit of motion caught my eye, and as I continued to look to determine what caused the motion, it became clear that it was a mans head, bobbing and weaving as a result of what would soon be apparent, from his being the back of an absolutely gorgeous, well muscled horse.

As their joint silhouette rose above the crest between two jagged peaks protruding from the hillside, it was soon apparent that they were not alone. Shortly behind them came the figure of a woman, walking rapidly, and in sync with the gait of the mounted rider. They sauntered down the hillside and paused at the bottom of the hillside on a small mound of dirt littered with un-trimmed shrubbery. At first glance, it was readily apparent that it was a woman, as her feminine features were clearly defined by the shadow created by her being between me and the mid afternoon sun.

As is the custom of the experienced race crew member of the time, I went to the tool box and retrieved the teams set of binoculars. We often had a few moments before a race, after the cars were put on the line for the start of the race, and we used this short break in the day's activities to gulp down some sort of food and try to relax before the ensuing pandemonium we all knew was coming momentarily. The approaching three to four hours of impending danger on the track and pit road, the violent unceasing noise, and the required split second mental gymnastics required to determine how you finish the race comparing you to your traveling competitors and determines the amount of prize money you take home to buy tires for the next race, pay for ensuing motor rebuilds, and has a direct effect on the quality of your dining experiences while on the road. At any rate, it is during this small lull in the pre-race activities that we take turns using the binoculars to gaze back at the people in the stands that are using binoculars to peer into our somewhat curious activities.

Most every event finds the spectators arriving well in advance of the start of the race, and most race fans are a very thirsty group, and as a result of their ‘condition' we quite often witnessed some rather bizarre activities, not the least of which were the times when ladies using a set of binoculars to look at us caught one of us looking at them. The most often response was a huge smile and an occasional wave. However on some occasions, particularly among the lower seats along the front stretch you would find a lady more than proud to share, what she believed to be here most appealing assets. While southern exposures were rare, they sometimes did occur, but by far the most common revelation was the singular or dual mammary display. I still find it amazing how well fed some of those ladies were, and their choice in decorating their display items defies description.

This is not what I had in mind when reaching for the binoculars, but I was rather curious about who was interested in the early week race preparation as viewed from outside the race track, and particularly from horseback. It is not a sight found at any of the tracks that we currently visited. Once focused on the hillside occupants, it became apparent they were of Indian descent. No feathers or head dresses, but clearly their skin complexion, jet black hair and lean, muscular bodies, as well as the fact the young man was astride the horse bareback made me assume these to be folks of Native American descent. The young man astride the horse was bare-chested and wore blue jeans cut off just above the knees, while the young lady wore a tank top and quite short shorts. She did not appear to be subservient in any manner, drawing close to the young man and showing amorous attention on several occasions. I was quite drawn to her long, straight black hair that reached down her back to just below her belt line. She did not appear to be wearing make up, but she was startling in the clarity and natural contours of her face, and her eyes seemed to radiate a glimmering light even from as far as I was from her at that time. I found that curious, but appealing. The snake was beginning to stirr.

We finished the day changing the springs and suspension settings, timed the motor, checked the stagger, set the wedge, and headed to the motel to prepare for the evening's dinner. We had been told during the afternoon that we were going to be treated to dinner at a very upscale restaurant and to dress accordingly. We later learned that it was the famous Pinnacle Peak Patio, who claim “no neckties allowed” and offer a Mesquite grilled 32 ounce ‘Cowboy' porterhouse steak for those with no bottom to their stomach or no limit to their imagination.

The crew chief of a well-heeled, factory sponsored team had been enticed to bring a large selection of ties for a sponsor event to be held in California at the following race. We caught wind of this and invited him to attend the dinner with us, and at the last minute called on him to lend the others of us who were not so ‘refined' any one of his spare ties. You can see where this is going. We arrived on time for our reservation for six, and as our invited crew chief was gazing at the walls filled with shortened ties, he suddenly was aware of our antics, but too late to prevent the inevitable, he watched in horror as all of his ties were severed just below the knot.

The tie severing moment was more pleasant to the others of us, as attractive ladies reached around from behind to remove the offending ties, and in doing so the closeness of their chests to our backs resulted in a pleasant welcome to their establishment. As it turned out, the lady that was severing the tie that I had borrowed seemed willing to take her time with her endeavor, and I was not at all interested in asking her to hurry, fully enjoying the encounter. When she asked which wall I would like her to mount the offending tie, I was startled by how much she favored the young lady that had followed the rider of the horse as they traversed the hillside that afternoon at the race track.

She was slightly taller than the other waitresses, had that long, shiny, jet black hair, and had perfect complexion highlighted by light lavender eye shadow and a darker shade of lavender lipstick. I immediately found her very attractive, and I am sure my reaction to her revealed that fact, as I was slow to answer her question all the while trying very hard not to be too obvious in admiring her features.

Throughout the dinner, our eyes caught each others at regular intervals and I tried conversing with her, asking if she had been the one on hillside, whether she was of Native American descent, and of course, if she had a boyfriend. She revealed that she did like horses and that she was almost full blooded Apache and that her grandmother had actually lived on the Fort Apache Indian reservation a few hours east of Phoenix in Whiteriver. She was currently attending the western branch of Arizona State University , and hinted that she was no longer seeing her boyfriend because he was interested in settling down, and she was not enthused about that at this point in her life. Ahah, says I.

Having ordered a more normal sized steak along with mashed potatoes and green beans, I was pleasantly surprised by the unusually good taste of the gravy and complimented the young waitress to that effect, but she noticed that I was not eating the green beans. I quietly replied that the local seasoning was not to my liking and she smiled, remembering my affinity for the gravy, suggested that I get more gravy as that might make them more palatable to me. She winked at me as she poured the gravy onto the green beans, and I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it did indeed make the beans more palatable, and I jokingly said to her that was very impressive gravy and in fact would add to the taste of anything that I cared to eat. Probably because she was constantly catching me eyeing her figure, she assumed that my comment was intended to be a double entendre, and smiled widely, displaying a gorgeous set of perfect white teeth.

As we were getting ready to leave, she approached me with my bill, along with a piece of paper with her name and number on it, and grabbing me with one arm pulled me to the side and asked if I would like to have dessert with her later that night. The answer was as you would expect, and after getting back to my room I called to find that she had to work a little later than she originally thought. She asked for my motel and room number and said she would come by later if at all possible. I fell asleep thinking she was just putting me off, but a knock on the door abruptly made my dreaming become a reality.

She had gone home, showered, put on a short dress that fit her contours in such a manner that was apparent that she wore no undergarmentsr. Her lavender eye shadow and lipstick were a little more prevalent, as she apparently read my mind regarding my particular tastes in dress and appearance. Her dress was an-off white rayon little number that fit tightly and perfectly set off her dark skin color. As I closed the door, she handed me a very warm styrofoam container with a lid and said if we hurry, I could enhance the taste of my dessert with the contents of the container.

As I opened the lid to discover a large serving of the Pinnacle Peak gravy, I glanced over and she had already dimmed the lights, laid back on the bed with her dress raised above her waist, and her splayed position left little doubt as to what she intended my dessert to be that evening.

Unlike the jagged peaks I had seen earlier in the day, hers were rounded, smooth and perfectly matched, and her mound was meticulously trimmed. Her Indian heritage provided a supremely supple body with a smooth almond hue, and her college gymnastic classes provided her with an unending array of contortional movements that to this day have left me admiring her flexibility. She was as receptive as she was supple, and she brought enough gravy for a four course meal. I enjoyed each and every one.

I have always wondered what she was thinking when she got home and looked at the gravy stains she surely had to have on her dress and that beautiful long black hair. I hope among other things, she remembered that I was in awe of her glaring beauty, and that I thought it was directly associated with her Native American background. I enjoyed her sharing with me some of her recollections of some of her families' adventures.

I was able to get her a pit pass for the weeks race events, and enjoyed her company on one more occasion before leaving for California .

We arrived in California the following day, and two days later in the afternoon as we were pushing the car to the gas pump, I heard some one call my name rather quietly, and looking over toward the fence, there she was, the Apache maiden with a large empty styrofoam coffee cup. Apparently she had made the voyage from Phoenix to Ontario the previous day, and as I approached she reached out, grabbed my hand and said; “Anyone know where I can get cup of hot gravy around here?”