The love affair with the automobile is alive and well.
In mid-August, Detroit again experienced the Woodward Dream Cruise.
The event attracted more than a million people who watched more than 20,000 hot rods and classic and high-performance cars and trucks cruise along 20 miles of the famous Woodward Avenue, just as they did years ago.
This year's cruise occurred while Detroit was recovering from the huge blackout that struck many Eastern and Midwestern states.
There was some talk of canceling the Dream Cruise, but the folks in charge quickly realized that a million people would be disappointed, so they carried on.
This event, which started as a single day, spans an entire week as Detroiters turn out to enjoy their automobiles.
Meanwhile, two thousand miles away in Pebble Beach, Calif., the granddaddy of all concours events was celebrating its 53rd birthday.
What started out as simply a wonderful concours d'elegance at Pebble Beach is now a weeklong event with activities throughout the area.
It starts with a Wednesday night party to benefit the California Highway Patrol, followed by a busy weekend of vintage car racing at the Laguna Seca track.
All in all, the annual Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance is a celebration of the most elegant cars on the planet.
It is a glorious event that raises a significant amount for local charities every year. Just to participate at Pebble Beach is considered an honor.
Meanwhile, in the Detroit area, people celebrate the car in general and their cars in particular. There are no entry fees, no criteria, just an opportunity for everyone who loves his or her vehicle to go out and cruise with thousands of like-minded people.
Probably no two automotive events are more dissimilar than the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance and the Woodward Dream Cruise.
That's what makes the love affair so exciting. Every car enthusiast can follow his or her passion with whatever he or she enjoys. There are plenty of ways to celebrate the love affair with the automobile, and both of those events are wildly successful.
Whether we're celebrating the classic vintage automobiles that were engineered and designed by our grandfathers or the hot rods and custom cars of today, there is no doubt that we live in a country of people who love their vehicles.
No amount of regulation is going to change that, thank goodness. We're making them safer, less polluting and more fuel efficient every year. But the love affair goes on nationwide. The industry is alive and well; just visit a car show.