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Happy New Year, 2020!!!

• CATEGORIES: Features

Happy New Year everyone!

The biggest event for me in 2019 was Dad’s passing; he had a good run. Last year at this time he was pretty sick; so, we knew what would happen, just not when. Now, this time, it’s Ann’s mother who is in that same situation. We know what’s going to happen, but not when. It’s just that time of life for us.

2019-03-12-dad-daivd-hospital-lores

Dad in the foreground, a few days before his death. Me in the background grabbing some zzz’s. Yep, I was a big help!

EWILLYS: 

I mentioned last year that eWillys, as we know it, might change in April of 2020. I have pushed that date back to January 2021. My goal with those changes is to free up more of my time for other projects. Moreover, during this last year, it feels like prices have really skyrocketed on 1940s-1960s jeeps of all types; the variety of jeeps feels like it has declined as well. Deals are less frequent, which means providing daily content has become more difficult.

On top of that, it’s getting more of a challenge to find new content for ‘feature’ posts. I’ve built a pretty substantial collection of brochures/magazines/books/misc and, from that, have been able to generate new content over the years. But, there are fewer and fewer items on eBay that I don’t already have, so locating rare items takes more time and money. For example, I know there are other mid-1950 Willys News magazines that remained undocumented and more than twelve mid-1950 Globetrotter magazines (maybe as many as twenty of them) that would be of interest to everyone. But, I’ll keep at it.

globetrotter-magazine

This excerpted pic is from the July/August 1955 issue of Globe-trotter magazine.

Currently, there are 53,726 posts on eWillys. While I will add approximately another 4000 posts this year, I also plan to be cutting much of the dead weight throughout the year; these are posts that provide no useful insights, modifications, or other aspects that might be interesting to me or readers.

2019 TRAVEL:

For the first time in seven years, we didn’t take an eWillys trip that lasted longer than a month. Dad’s illness (and frequent trips to Seattle) combined with tight finances kept us around home. On the positive side, the summer in Pasco was perfect temp wise––like Goldilocks porridge, not too hot and not too cold––so I spent a good deal of time pouring through Ernie Pyle’s old columns next to our garden-pond area (Ann’s flowers and plants were beautiful this year).

summer-2019-backyard

Summer 2019 Backyard courtesy of Ann (well, she selected the plants, while we dug).

I found Ernie’s account of pre-WWII America fascinating (he traveled all over the US between 1935-1941). Then, when he finally got the chance, he traveled with troops from the frontest of the front lines to the most removed troops far in the rear performing critical, but often forgotten, roles. I believe his columns provide a comprehensive, perhaps unequaled look at why the behind-the-scenes military operations are so important to fighting conflicts.

The one major two-week trip Ann and I did manage to accomplish was a fast trip to Pennsylvania and back during early July, to deliver Rusty the DJ-3A to its new owner. We were very lucky to leave after the rains finally subsided in the Midwest, but before the heat arrived on the East Coast. It was a wonderful to be on the road again, even if it only lasted two weeks.

rusty-lores

Rusty the DJ-3A all ready for his trip east in July of 2019.

LOST BISCUIT: As for work on Biscuit, that’s come to a halt again. Time is proving difficult to find, and will so for at least the next year. So, I plan to sell Biscuit (and all the trimmings); I just hate to see it sit there. Meanwhile, I’ll keep Patterson and fix some of his small issues. Then, in two years, I’ll have the money to buy another flattie.  

2020 TRAVEL:

In March, we plan to have a ‘most excellent’ time at the FC Roundup in Phoenix. It’s the final one, so it should be great. My son Karson plans to travel with us, at the minimum, down to Phoenix. While down there, we will spend some time with Joe-in-Mesa and his WWII jeeps and travel to meet Drew Norman at his Jeep Farm.

2019-fc-roundup

Pic from the 2019 FC-Roundup

The rest of our trip is ill-defined, but it’s my goal to head to Dallas to meet several relatives and also Fort Worth to finally meet long-time reader Gayland. There’s at least one other reader I hope to connect with near Dallas. After that, I’d like to make a quick trip down to meet Barry Ogletree, a visit I’ve had to put off for several years. From there, I hope to travel north to Denver, where I need to do some research for my next book. How much Ann and Karson will accompany me depends on their flexibility.

That’s my updates. I hope everyone has a Happy New Year!!

 

18 Comments on “Happy New Year, 2020!!!

  1. David

    Happy New Year to everyone. Bless you David. You provide a valuable service to a tight knit enthusiastic community. I look forward to reviewing your site daily.

  2. Mike

    Dave, Selling Biscuit may sound like a good idea today, but in later years as we age, it feels good to be surrounded with familiar friends from the past. I’m 70 now, don’t have the energy to work on my vehicles like I did 30 years ago. I’ve sold some off over the years, but kept my core collection. I bought my 1948 CJ2A just before Christmas in 1975. Forty four years later, it still feels good to sit in it and turn the key, hear the purr of the 4 cylinder flat head. For me, it gives me comfort in my old age to be with “old friends” I grew up with in the days of my youth.
    The other aspect to consider, sell biscuit now, you most likely pay more for the same in future years if you buy another like Vehicle. Just food for thought, Happy New Year.

  3. Dan B.

    Happy New Year.

    Thanks for bringing us along wherever the road of life (and Willys life) takes you. Your site, perspective, and writing talents make an outstanding combo.

  4. Mike Tellez

    Sorry to hear about your mother in law David. I might be in the same boat in 10 years, hopefully longer.
    I dont know how you do it but Im glad you do. TIME , time is precious and goes by quickly. More so when your doing things for others and not your own projects.
    Myself and a few other flat fender nuts have learned alot from your post and from others in the comments section. This is one of the few sites where people are positive even when the comments are constructive. The info submitted and the history that you find and share encourages many of us to keep wrenching and riding.
    I have a very unoriginal 44 MB that I drive often here in El Paso and when parked, parents ask if they can take a picture with their kid in the drivers seat or of their elderly Vet standing next to it. It also encourages future generations and brings back memories of simpler days gone by.
    David youve been gracious enough to have submitted my 42GPW for sale with a quickness and submitted a vintage article I found that others could enjoy.
    Read that you may be short in literature so If I find any vintage Jeep articles or photos I’ll send them your way to use at your discretion to share with others.
    This may be an unpopular suggestion since so many people want something for nothing and have forgotten or never knew that so much centralized info used to be paid for at the newsstand in the form of a magazine. Heck in the 90s autotrader used to be a magazine that we had to pay for to buy and advertise. Have you ever thought about charging a small fee for those of us that sell Jeeps Or is there some type of legality that would prevent that. Thanks again for all your hard work.

  5. SE Pennsylvania Steve

    Dave, sorry to hear about your older relatives reaching the end of life’s journey. It reminds me of that line from one of the Indiana Jones movies, we’re at the point of our lives that more things are taken away from us than given to us. The passing of those close to us is both inevitable and hard on those left behind.
    Thank you for all your efforts with eWillys. You’ve brought a lot of joy and knowledge to a lot of people.
    And good luck with all your future endeavors, whatever they may be.

  6. Chuck

    🎉HAPPY NEW YEAR DAVE & ANN❗️

    I like what Mike said about selling Biscut. I can relate, still miss my 46 forty years later, it had so much of me in it.

    When you go to Dallas, I have a good friend outside Dallas in Paradise. He is a Vietnam Vet and has a militarized CJ2A and and old YJ Renegade with the big fenders. He reads your site occasionally. They would love to meet you if you have time.

    Have a Great Year, life is to short not to!
    (In contact with JR. What a great guy with a big heart and a good sense of humor. Thank you for setting that up!)

  7. Dutch 1960

    Never commented before, but I have lurked for a long time. Don’t, don’t sell the Jeep. Put it away, you can always sell it later if need be. I stashed a ’46 VEC back in the ’90s, paid almost nothing for it at the time. It is just now getting done and out there, all these decades later, and I never could have duplicated what I have, for any reasonable price, let alone finding one I like (not too rough, not too nice, not too original, not too modified). If you store it away from the weather, it will save like a time capsule, no plastic or electronics to rot in place.

    I saved the Jeep, but didn’t save another old car I treasured. Now, I can hardly find one for any price, and again have the problem of the rough/nice/originality/modified equation to deal with, with not many choices and high prices when I do find one. Keep the Jeep!!

  8. Nick

    Thank you Dave for everything you do. I’m sure running ewillys takes more free time than most could ever imagine. You’ve done a great service to the community, and I wish you well on future endeavors.

  9. David Eilers Post author

    Happy New Year everyone!

    Again, thanks for all the kind comments about the site. I’m just happy folks still enjoy it after all these years, especially with the rise and readership on social media like FB and Instagram and all the others I’m too old to use.

    Regarding Biscuit, the next year and a half will include several life changes, most of which I have not shared. Trying not to be specific, we are expecting some good things in the near future. Letting Biscuit go now gives me more peace than angst, and the sale of which will fund the possible upcoming Texas trip with my oldest son (which may be the basis of my next book … still working through the ideas). So, if I can find someone else that values Biscuit and can do something with it, I’m okay with that. Meanwhile, I’m in a unique situation in that I’ve made so many connections over the last decade, in addition to the ones I had from my jeep club days, that finding another jeep(s) in a year or two won’t be all the difficult.

    Anyway, Biscuit isn’t sold yet, so we’ll see how the new year unfolds.

  10. Dave T in CT

    Happy & Healthy New Year Dave & Ann – sorry to hear about Ann’s mom – never a good time but i feel the holiday season makes it harder – as for ewillys continuing longer , you’ve made my new years happy – thankyou – as for selling your jeep Dave , you said yourself early in this article that prices are rising – i seen myself in the past 3 yrs that cj2a/3a that were 5/6000 are now 8500 and ones that were 10,000 are now 14,000 – just my opinion/observation – just way all the odds closely – i know i will be looking forward to see how it all works out – god bless you Dave and your family – thanks for all you do us with your site !!

  11. Gerald Huber

    Dave, Happy New Year and Best Wishes for a less stressful 2020 for you and Ann. The Jeep and Willys community can’t thank you enough for the hard work and sacrifice you make to drive the EWILLYS publication. You are an inspiration to so many who share your interests and attachment to the flatfender heritage. I can only imagine the thousands of fellow Jeepers, like myself, who start each day with a cup of coffee and EWILLYS. We are all indebted to you for the dedication you deliver and hope that you will find a way to sustain and continue for a long time. If there is a way to ease the task, maybe some of the followers could share and contribute to the site. Thanks for all you do to keep us informed, educated and entertained.

  12. Barry

    Dave,
    I’ve posted my thanks to you at https://www.farmjeep.com/david-eilers/ but it bears repeating again. It is your willingness to share that makes eWillys so special. I can’t imagine trying to do what you have done all these years – get a post out daily. Getting a post out daily may sound simple and it can be if you aren’t worried about content. But you do worry and a fun task can become a chore.

    I look forward to having more discussions about how eWillys might evolve. I wish you and Ann the best that 2020 has to offer.

    Barry

  13. Colin Peabody

    Dave- You and I have communicated over the years, met with each other and Ann, and become friends. As I get older, into the last quarter of a century, I find I have to slow down, not able to do many of the things I would like to do and ponder what I should do with many of the “toys” I have accumulated. I made the decision nearly a year ago, after 2 years of trying to decide, to sell my beloved 60 Corvette. It had been sitting for a while and wasn’t getting the attention it needed, so off to a new caretaker. Life goes on and with that, brings more changes, the passing of loved ones, less travel, less time in the man cave, more time reading, sitting at the computer or watching tv when it hurts to do anything else.

    We look forward to seeing you and Ann at Jesse’s in March, which will be the end of an era and we hope one of his faithful FC followers will pick up the banner and carry on. Thanks for everything you have done for us folks over the years and we hope 2020 is a good year for you.

  14. David Eilers Post author

    Colin: I couldn’t agree more. We look forward to seeing you in less than three months!

    Barry: Same here, because I still haven’t figured out how I will change it! 🙂

    Gerald: One way that would speed things up for me would be some automation (aka software design). I plan to approach some WordPress plugin developers and/or RSS feed developers to see if someone could design a way to create a custom indexing system and search mechanism for ads for various sites, aggregate them, ordered by date, then allow me to choose ads and export the chosen ones to eWillys. That would be the killer app for me.

  15. Bill Garland

    David, When I look at that photo of you curled up in that hospital room it reminded me of my dad. 21 years ago next week I did the same thing while he was hospitalized for heart problems. Sadly he passed 24 hrs. after bypass surgery. I was there for him and I won’t forget. He was my hero. Thank you for all that you do with ewillys. At 5:30 AM with my coffee, it is my first stop to start my day. I truly enjoyed our visit with you and Ann when you came to Carlisle Pa. and visited my shop on the mountain. I hope the new year will be good to you and any time you get back east, please contact me. Bill Garland

  16. David Eilers Post author

    Thanks Bill. We will be back that direction at some point! I’ll let you know when we do. 🙂

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