Thursday, August 14, 2008

Ol' Smokey's Got Them Ears On and He's Hot On Your Trail

Okay. Now we're back to the end of our trip. On Sunday night, my cousin offered up his home so we could stay there instead of paying for a motel the last night. He was going out of town anyway, and so we stayed there and sat in his jacuzzi and watched a movie on his GIGANTIC TV that took up one whole wall of his living room. We called it Club Med. It was so great that we got to stay there, especially since our first day of driving home was hard, hard, hard.

We were going from San Francisco to Salt Lake City, which should have taken us almost twelve hours, but then we'd lose an hour switching time zones and then we lost another hour because of a stupid bus that caught on fire outside of Sacramento.

Did I mention that we were all grouchy too, or did I need to? Anyway, we finally made it to Salt Lake City around midnight. We were supposed to camp at the KOA there and I was really not looking forward to unpacking, let alone setting up a tent. My brother also called about then to tell me that my Uncle Jack had died. He had cancer for a while, so it was probably better for him, but it was still sad for the rest of us. He's the one who started our family photography business. You can read his obit in the Thoroughbred Times here.

Right as we were entering the town, I saw a car on the side of the road. I signaled even though we were the only car on the road, and moved over to the next lane, and then signaled again to move back. The car turned out to be a cop and I happened to have a headlight out and apparently it was a slow night, so the next thing you know, I got pulled over for not signaling long enough before switching lanes. You know, because I could have caused an accident with all those non-existent cars behind me. He let me off with a warning and asked me if I knew that my engine was steaming and did I think it was overheated? Probably. We were all overheated right then. I grumbled stupid shit under my breath as I drove away and then proceeded to get lost and ended up at the airport. By that time, I had given up on the KOA and did a quick u-turn at the first sight of a Motel 6.

We checked in and all went immediately to bed. My nose started running like crazy, and I thought it was weird until I realized there was blood all over my pillowcase. Perfect. I haven't had a bloody nose since I was a kid. It was close to 2 before I finally got to sleep. Luckily, the next two days of driving went so much better than that.

These two photos were taken in Wyoming and put the Close Encounters theme song in my head for about an hour.

We spent the next night in North Platte, Nebraska. True to form, on our last day on the road we drove through a horrible, terrifying thunderstorm - fucking Nebraska. We got home around 3:30 in the afternoon and I could have slept for three days straight, no problem.

I loved our trip. It was everything we wanted and some things we didn't. But if you only have one really bad day in two weeks of a poor people roadtrip, where you're stuck in a car and then a tent and then a small motel room for hours upon hours with your two teenage daughters, then it must be a pretty fucking great adventure, don't you think?

12 comments:

Remiman said...

Churlita,
I agree, you had a pretty fucking great adventure!
My hooch (lean-to) mate in 'Nam was from North Platte Nebraska. Who'd a thought. He lives in Denver now.

evilesb138 said...

what an epic adventure....

I always love the cops in the middle of nowhere. He probably pulled you over because he was lonely and needed someone to talk to.

The vehicle made the whole trip with just some steaming...that's pretty good. Glad you all made it back in good shape and did not kill each other on the crabby road.

I have a new link...oh by the way

Tara said...

I'm so sorry about your uncle! Sad news anytime, but especially on a vacation.

You probably added some excitement to that policeman's shift on the lonely road. Isn't that comforting? ;)

Vacations are not perfect, and I don't know if I could keep it together driving all that time to and back from those places without tearing someone's head off. But I am glad you did have some fun times and now you're back home with your own, comfortable bed.

NoRegrets said...

You all are heroes...
And sorry about your uncle...
When's the next road trip? :-)

Mr Atrocity said...

Sorry to hear of your uncle's death but, as you say, it may have been best for him. In happier new, thank you for the whole story of epic odyssey across the country. All kinds of awesomeness.

jeci said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your uncle.

I think it's awesome that you did this with your girls. I bet they loved it!

Nate said...

Awesome trip they'll remember forever.

laura b. said...

I'm sorry about your uncle. It sounds like he had a very interesting life! I also think it is super cool that your daughter has a family name. I always wanted to name one of my boys Bryant, but WTG hated it.

It has been so great hearing about your trip! Thanks for sharing it with we who are homebound.

aliencg said...

My condolences on the loss of your uncle. I'm glad you made it home safely and without a citation. It sounds like it was a great trip.

Lynnster said...

I'm so sorry about your uncle, Churlita.

And I am so down with you over fucking Nebraska. I have been mad at it ever since my sister and brother-in-law moved there, but after actually GOING there - hoo boy. They love it there. I'm, like, why?

I'm glad you obviously found your head before you got back home so you could type up what has been a fabulously fun report of your trip!

Liz said...

That cop is a dick. I get mad just reading about your ticket.

Mrs. Hairy Woman said...

It's kinda funny.. you got pulled over for a stupid light but no cops around for pulling a U-turn.. he he.. glad you made it back safely and in one piece.. Now you have to start planning for next vacation..

My condolences to you and your family..