Are You Missing Something?
Unknown to my dad at the time, his licence plate collection started in the early 70s when he acquired a Bahamas licence plate off a junked car during a vacation there. What gives the unique plate 82% more awesomeness is that it’s a rare “Out Islands” plate.
About a decade later my dad picked up a standard, boring Florida plate. He didn’t do anything with these plates, and they remained relatively forgotten until a long-lost relative in Arizona rejoined our family. Soon my dad had an Arizona plate.
After seeing dozens of painted licence plates being sold by beach vendors during my vacation in the Dominican Republic, I decided to bring one back for my daddy as a souvenir. I asked the vendor if he had any that were unpainted, and he presented me with a glorious orange plate which even had the stickers on it.
Remembering my dad’s excitement at the Dominican plate, I set out to find a Venezuelan plate for him when we visited Margarita Island last week.
To my surprise it proved impossible to find any vendors selling licence plates. After days of searching, I finally asked one of the resort employees, who made a few phone calls. His friend, another employee, stated he could get me one if I was willing to pay $60,000 Bolivars. It seemed a little shady. But I had enough plausible deniability to ease my conscious so I said, "I’ll give him $75,000 – but I want two."
On our last day, at a predetermined meeting time of 8:00 a.m., I met the guy in the lobby of our hotel. "Dos Benezuela" he said to me.
“Perfecto!” I replied, sounding exactly like the tourist I was. I handed him the money, watched him flip through the bills nonchalantly, and hobbled away with the biggest smile on my face.
My dad loved the thick, old galvanized Venezuelan plate I gave him. And I’m enjoying the beginning of my collection with my new-style Venezuelan plate - which may or may not be stolen.