Hi to all. My name is Tony Meader and my wife. Rose and I and our 100% yellow Lab live in Palmyra, Tennessee, just southwest of Clarksville. We moved here 21 years ago from Chesapeake, Virginia, my last duty station while serving in the U. S. Coast Guard. We have 3 children, 9 grandchildren, and 2 great-grandchildren. I retired from the Coast Guard in 1990 after 25 years as an officer and pilot, having flown helicopters and fixed wing aircraft, and being stationed in many desirable duty stations such as Corpus Christi, TX, Port Angeles, WA. Miami, FL (twice), Mobile, AL, Barbers Point, HI (somebody had to do it), Washington, D.C., and Elizabeth City, N.C. In 1976, I even flew helicopters off the Coast Guard’s newest ice breaker on its maiden voyage to Alaska and the Bering Sea. We traversed the Bering Strait, visited Nome and points north, including crossing the arctic circle, visited several Eskimo-inhabited islands, and moored overnight to several ice shelves where we were often visited by polar bears who were curious about the large, red-hulled ship in their midst.
On returning to the mainland, after my 3-year tour in Hawaii, I bought my first horse since high school. I then began breeding, buying, selling, training and riding beautiful Appaloosas. I have two today. Horses have been my primary recreational activity for the past 33 years.
On the Tuesday before Christmas last year, I was surfing the net, looking at “used Alfas for sale” when I saw several photos of a beautiful 1989 Spider Veloce with only 64,000 miles. As I looked closer, I saw that it had Tennessee plates. I showed the photos to my wife Rose and all she said was, “Can we get it?” The next day we went southwest of Savannah, TN, test drove the car, negotiated price, and drove the car home. After changing all fluids and tires, we now drive it regularly, and mostly with the top down and booted.
Our Spider Veloce is my third Alfa. After being transferred to Corpus Christi in 1965, I bought a 1963 Giulietta Spider off a used car lot for $1,200!! This was my daily driver for several years, through an engine rebuild and a wreck, until I traded it as my first child proved a 2-seater was impractical for a growing family. In about 1979, I bought a new Sprint Veloce from the dealer in Miami. We took that lovely and fun car to Hawaii where it was going to be my daily driver. Because of where we lived, it was more practical for Rose to drive the Alfa to her job in downtown Honolulu, and I rode a moped to my duty station at Barbers Point. Only recently did Rose confess that she loved driving the Alfa because most of the MEN on the Interstate wanted to race that WOMAN in the bright red sports car. With an evil grin she adds, “And I beat them all!!!”Since my first 2 Alfas were daily drivers, I never considered “saving” them or even considered there being an “owner’s club.” In the 60’s and 70’s, parts were readily available and trained mechanics were “just around the corner.” A few weeks after buying my latest Spider, I met another Alfa owner (she drives a red 1990 Spider), and she told me about AROC USA. As I joined that club, I discovered A.L.F.A Inc, and, as they say, the rest is history. Our President, Bo Richardson, sent me a welcome email and in that suggested I think about leading some of our members through NW Tennessee and the Land Between the Lakes (LBL) area of southern Kentucky. Rose and I mapped a route that I think will highlight the diversity and beauty of the area and I hope you will join us on Saturday August 19. We will meet at my house, 1874 Palmyra Rd, Palmyra, TN, at 10:00 a.m. and drive about 4 hours, stopping at several interesting sites. Be sure to bring a sack lunch as we will be stopping at a picnic area in LBL. Rain date is August 26, as I hope for no rain so all the spiders can be top-down.
I look forward to meeting as many of the club members as possible.