Tex Harris has just turned 70 and been put out to pasture by his employer. The curtain seems to be falling on his life. Before the obese soprano can vocalize the final notes, Tex discovers there is more to living than a career. After rescuing a damsel in distress on the freeway, he decides the role of hero fits him as well as the white Stetson he always wears. He organizes a group of senior citizens to patrol the highway to help those in need. His quest brings him into contact with Lizzie, an attractive widow who captures his heart. Unfortunately, she also wins the affection of Tex's best friend and his newly acquired nemesis. The three compete for Lizzie's affections as they all experience new things together. Tex learns that being a hero sometimes means making enemies, but more importantly that discovers that forgiveness is the most wonderful gift of all.
Septuagenarian. Tex Harris rolled that word over in his mind. It didn’t sit well. He swished it around his mouth and between his teeth a couple of times. It didn’t taste any better. He rolled down the window when he reached the red light at the entrance of I-29 and spat. He didn’t feel any better about celebrating – or was mourning a better word – birthday number seventy. I think old age snuck up on me like a freaking bushwhacker. He glanced in the rear-view mirror at his seventy-year-old face. At least I don’t look any older than I did yesterday.
The white Stetson covered his thinning hair, giving him the appearance of virility. In the past he’d been told he was handsome. His thoughts about whether that adjective would still apply were interrupted by the car horn behind him. Tex’s eyes jerked back to the road ahead where he saw the light was green.
The impatient driver honked again. “I’m going! Get off my ass!” He overcame the insane urge to shift into reverse and play demolition derby with the compact car behind him and eased onto the freeway entrance.
The occasion of becoming a Septuagenarian wasn’t an event worthy of jubilation in his estimation, but he had decided to visit the senior citizens’ center. The motivation wasn’t so much for celebrating but more to avoid feeling old and lonely at the same time. If fifty is over the hill, seventy must be close to being under the hill. Why does the word daisies always pop up when I ponder that term? He shuddered. “Quit thinking about death, you old coot. It’ll come around soon enough without dwelling on it.” Damn, I’m talking to myself again.
He had just reached cruising speed when he noticed a car ahead on the shoulder. From a distance, he could see that someone was standing beside it trying to flag down some help. He looked in the rear-view mirror to make sure he was clear to slow down without spawning a road-rage attack. He wasn’t in the mood to get a can of whoop-ass for his lone birthday present because he’d incensed the wrong driver. The traffic was usually heavy in this stretch, but he was in luck today. He safely reduced his speed and detoured onto the shoulder when he reached the car in distress.
Often in the past on the way to work or some other pressing engagement, he had guiltily shot past marooned motorists. He always swore that when he retired, he’d stop and help people. Today, he was officially put out to pasture, thanks to the mandatory retirement laws at his former place of employment, and he had no excuses for driving by.
As he coasted to a stop, even his bleary old eyes could see that the driver of the wounded auto was a shapely woman. Attired in tight shorts, the vision of her legs caused his eyes to roll. “Eat your heart out, Betty Grable.” He shoved the gearshift into park and got out. His eyes narrowed as he surveyed the scene.
The car ahead of him had gone past the stricken auto, slammed on the brakes, pulled in, and backed toward the woman. Two ratty-looking men got out of the vehicle and headed toward the same destination Tex had his sights on. He wasn’t able to see well enough to detect the direction of their eyes, but he had a pretty good idea what they were eyeballing. The young lady had more charms than just the legs of a thoroughbred. He shook his head. Even turning seventy hadn’t cured him of the Head-on-a-swivel Syndrome that he suffered whenever a pretty filly was nearby.
He reached the driver just after the younger men arrived.
“We got this one taken care of, pops,” the muscular one uttered, barely taking his eye off the bombshell to glance at the old man. “You can get back on your horse and ride into the sunset.”