Willys Alberto Sevillano
Part 1: Alberto gets a new suit
¡Hola! My name is Willys Alberto Sevillano. I was born in Toledo in Los Estados Unidos in 1954, and lived for 55 years in Sevilla in the Zona Cafetera ("Coffee Zone") of Colombia (see a map, 370K JPEG.)
Every Willys is beloved in Colombia, but this is the story of how some special people fell in love with me, gave me a new suit of clothes and took me to Bogotá, to become a star (which you will see in Part 2 of my story.)
My new driver found me on the street in Sevilla. I have been in yellow for a long time, but my birthday suit was green.
A souvenir photo of me and Don Alberto, to remember the day we parted after many years together. I have a new driver but I don't know him well yet.
Preparation begins for new paint, but as deterioration of the metal becomes visible, the new plan is the complete replacement of my covering.
The old yellow suit, ready to become I don't know what... Another car? A container ship? A can of Milo? Much luck, old friend.
This is the identification which shows my age. I better keep it in case I need to get into a nightclub!
The new suit for a 55-year-old Willys is tailored very quickly.
The suit is fitted and then removed to prepare for painting. Soon I will be ready for the approval of my new driver.
This is Mario -- I call him Hairy. He is my new driver, and he is proud that we will keep the license plate from Sevilla.
I finally get to meet the beautiful Ewa, who at first does not like me, but soon has even dared to jump in the driver's seat.
When Hairy sees my new front covering, he says "What about the Willys mark?"
They tell Hairy not to worry, and show him this device for pressing the sheets.
The mark is maybe not perfect, but pretty good. And Sofía would like to take me for a drive.
But we are not quite ready -- there is no cap on my radiator! And there is red paint in some places we don't need it...
Hairy does not like the red paint on the rims, so he is going to send me back for black. And we want some classic tires.
The eyes! Although these protectors are not part of the American Willys, they are popular in the coffee zone of Colombia. Here we are ready to go for a drive in the streets after three months, and I am nervous.
Now Hairy is slightly distressed because I look like new, but the gentlemen at the CDA inspection enjoy being sharp enough to find any problem, and we need to leave for Bogotá on Friday.
We pass the inspection, but one of my eyes is winking! We head into the mountains in heavy traffic (see the map, 370K JPEG).
The police wave me over and I think we are in trouble, but they only want to take a picture because one of the policemen has a lifelong dream of owning a Jeep Willys!
A park filled with eucalyptus trees -- worth opening the windows and at least putting your head out. Here is a good look at my new tires, with whitewalls and mudflaps.
The highest point is more than 3,200 meters, and we stop for a photo of Ewa and Hairy. Good to know that they are happy, and I am not a point of contention. Downhill from here to Bogotá!
Continue to Part 2: Alberto arrives in the big city.
Thanks to Willys Alberto for his story; Mario and Ewa for the photos from 2009; Lizardo for the drawing; and Google for the base of the map. -- Derek Redmond
To see all of Willys Alberto's pictures, go to his Flickr page.
Nearby in Girardot, Colombia lives Alberto's brother who was right behind him on the assembly line in Toledo.
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Last updated 10 February 2016 by Derek Redmond firstname.lastname@example.org
All content not credited and previously copyright, is copyright Derek Redmond