A Captivating Piece of Cardboard

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I remember after endless years of waiting, that object I dreamt about was finally sitting right there infront of me, and it was fantastic. Everyday the thought of it lingered in my mind. It never backed down from its fight to keep itself centered in my head, no matter how hard I tried. It felt and still feels impossible to go even half an hour without it sneaking its way into my thoughts again. It’s almost as if part of my brain was formatted and transformed just to remind me of it at every waking moment. I cannot find the words to explain it fully, but if I had to describe it in one word it would have to be everlasting. It does not matter where I am or what I am thinking about, it always manages to find a way back to me.

     

For years I had been waiting for this day. Every day I would mention it over and over again, making myself sound like a broken record in hopes that I could convince my parents to take me and my friends to this place. I remember it vividly, almost like it was yesterday. It was on a misty summer Wednesday morning that I found myself on this seemingly never ending journey to place known as Cleveland Ohio, traveling in my father’s brand new, monstrous, metallic blue truck with my parents and my two equally anxious friends. I still remember walking out to the shiny new truck in the cool, wet morning air, the slight breeze running through my hair and over my skin. The sky was darker than usual as it had been forecasted to rain in spots, however there was still a soft but bright light shining down around me. The tiny dusty pebbles of my driveway crunched under my feet with every step as I briskly walked to the car, to eager to simply just walk the whole way. I excitedly hopped in the car and just like that, we were off and soon enough, my thinking would change forever. While traveling in this new fancy truck with all these features was fantastic and almost futuristic, everything about that truck was about to seem completely obsolete and irrelevant. From one moment to the next, what I once saw as a super fancy and luxurious truck turned into something different, something almost as ancient, loud, inefficient, and rickety as the first ever Ford Model T.
     

When we arrived at our destination, we ran like our lives depended on it, towards the spotless, crystal clear glass doors of the sleek black and white building. We opened the massive glass doors and found ourselves gaping in awe at what we saw. The spotless white and black accented machine that we had been in love with for years was finally just a few feet away from us on the pristine showroom floor. The great glass walls allowed the soft but bright May sunlight to shine down on the spotless machine as well as the showroom which was highlighted with vivid reds, blacks, and whites as well as the overall simplistic design of the surrounding area. In the dead center of this futuristic room laid the creation we had traveled for miles to see. It’s towering falcon doors made us seem so small, the lights reflected off the perfectly shined paint job, and the size of it made us feel like ants, like we were insignificant. From the 17 inch control screen, 713 pounds of instant torque, and 100 Kw battery, we knew that we were standing in front of a new revolution waiting to spring into action, what I would consider almost like the next Model T. What we were standing in front of was a factory new Tesla Model X.
     

As we were busy inspecting every possible square inch of this beautiful car, I was handed a small and blindingly bright red card with the razor sharp Tesla logo on the front by a surprisingly young sales manager. Even though he was pale young guy of an average 5”8’ height, he was highly experienced and he certainly held himself high. He seemed to have this everlasting glow that shined throughout the room that providing a sense of comfort or bliss. He casually talked about every aspect of the car without seeming anxious or rushed and he never mentioning sales, deals, or any aspect that would make us want to deeply ponder about buying such a car. Instead, he showed that he wasn’t there to push people around and pressure people into a sale like a normal dealership. That completely average nerdy guy was only there because he wanted to show people the unaverage car of the future. After being handed the card, it was time for the main event of the day. A test drive in the exact same car that we had seen in the showroom.
     

We followed the sales manager out into the crowded parking lot which I can only describe as being a sea of hundreds of new sparkling teslas, to a section of higher end cars that had been waiting to be taken out for this exact purpose. We sat and watched as the sales manager swiftly took out his phone and pressed a single button which made the car silently and effortlessly back out of its resting place by itself and into an open row where it proceeded to automatically and fluently open all of its doors and adjust itself to all of his preferences from the mirrors to the last millimeter of his favorite seat position. We all piled into the car and my dad found himself in the driver's seat not realising what he had gotten himself into. We drove through downtown and were given a brief overview of the smaller features and then it was time to move onto the highway, the place that currently makes the car stand out the most. My dad guided the car silently and quickly onto the on ramp and the sales manager said, “I’m not kidding when I say this, I want you to floor it when you get to the end of the ramp”. About ten seconds later, my dad did just as he was told, smashing the accelerator to the floor and in about one and a half seconds we were already pushing seventy miles an hour. The acceleration creaked throughout the car, all of us were pushed as far back into the seat as we could have gone feeling the force on every inch of our bodies. In that one moment you could feel everything from your organs finding their way into places they had never been before and even your blood being forced against every vein and artery in your body. That is how we knew that we had in fact found the beast we had set out looking for. If the impact of 700 horsepower was not enough for us, it was not even a minute later when the car was driving itself on the highway. Little did I know that those few minutes of a drive would change my thinking and passion forever.
     

To this day I still carry that card with me every single day. I keep it in my wallet, in one of my clear card slots so it's never hidden away from view. This tiny piece of cardboard may seem like nothing to anyone else but to me it is so much more. While it may just be a tiny piece of stiff paper, it symbolizes my passion and my hopes for the future and it also reminds me of just a great time I had with my parents and friends. I’ve always loved engineering, science and technology but this experience pushed that passion to a whole new level. Everything this card stands for represents my new found fiery passion. For every time that I feel worn out by school or just life in general, this card reminds me of what will come from all of my hard work and it pushes me to fight through the work and the stress to become the thing I’ve always wanted to be, an engineer for a new future.






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