A few days late...the story of my journey from the Spring to TN and back again.
The four and a half days of my trip were a bit of blur. There were a lot of miles driven, a lot of entertainment had by all. Instead of trying to recap everything - no one is interested in that - I thought I'd share some of the more remarkable moments from my adventures. Consider this the abridged version.
Day #1 - Wednesday, July 2
Sam and I cram ourselves and the bags full of her life into the back of the Tib, and set off around noon. 700 miles, including all of Kansas, lay ahead of us. We plan on driving from the Springs to Columbia, MO.
Somewhere in the middle of Kansas we stop for dinner and manage to find a DQ that has no ice cream. It still takes them 20 minutes to make our food, even with the lack of business.
We pass two billboards right next to each other. The first reads: "Jesus saves, pornography destroys." The second says: "Adult Superstore."
Hours later we pay the leave the state while watching a remarkable lightning storm play out in front of us. Then we drive through it. Luckily I am experienced in driving in rain.
We arrive at our destination 10 1/2 hours after we started driving, greet our host and collapse into bed.
Day #2 - Thursday, July 3
We leap, or crawl, out of bed to start our second day of driving. After a delicious breakfast in downtown Columbia, I am given a whirlwind tour of Mizzou and then we jet.
Stop #1 is a book on tape, stop #2 is 64 oz of Sun Drop for Sam. And the world suddenly looked a little brighter.
We make our way through the end of MO, the corner of IL and a stretch of KY before reaching our destination of TN. The night ends with an orchestra, fireworks, and some good BBQ. Plus a little dancing downtown. A great to celebrate having made it and to ring in our country's bday.
Day #3 - Friday, July 4
The plan originally had been to wake up at an early hour, eat and drive to the lake. Instead we rise about mid morning. Still tired, but ready for the day. We eat waffles, load our gear into the car and head for the lake.
Only to be stopped by a parade in Small Town, America. The only way around, about 30 minutes out of our way. We reach the lake around lunch time, just in time to join the gang in hitting the water. With one boat and 15-ish people it takes to trips to get everyone to our destination on the water.
Then we hang. Floating on a random assortment of objects, including a kiddie pool, strung together with rope. If you've ever heard the song "Red Neck Yacht Club," you can imagine what it looked like.
After saturating ourselves and roasting in the sun, the group agrees that we should try to get everyone back in one load. So inner tube is tied to inner tube to the back of the boat to get towed in.
Everyone piles on or in, but somehow the driver misses the memo to go slow. The three of us on the back tube are fighting to stay on and inside the wake, knowing full well to cross over the wake means we will flip. The guy beside me finally falls off anyways.
This the driver also misses. We wave our arms and yell, and in the process I also fall in.
After reconfiguring ourselves we head back to the house to relax.
Sam and I make an executive decision not to stay the night. At this point we need all the sleep we can get and it won't happen at the lake.
We drive to her parent's house with an ongoing fireworks show. An the same Small Town, America that had the parade, also has a fireworks show, leading to even more delays on the way home. But we make it.
Day #4 - Saturday, July 5
After eating a delicious homemade country breakfast. Sam and I head towards Chat. Me with my bags packed, ready to catch my flight home. We meet up with her brother, her brother's girlfriend and her friend for a drink before she takes me to the airport.
At 3:15 p.m. EST I check in at the five gate airport only to learn that my flight has been delayed. Good thing I have some reading material.
I make it from Chat. to ATL.
Then the ATL airport proceeds to confuse the crap out of me. I walk from terminal C to terminal E to terminal B to terminal E to terminal B and back to terminal E. Luckily, or unluckily, my flight is again delayed. I arrive in DEN at 12:30 a.m. EST, almost two hours later than planned, and still face the drive back to the Springs.
A lot of travel in short amount of time. That's for sure.