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Mini-Vacation ~ Traveling Home Woes

Dun, dun, dunnnn.
What an ominous sounding title, huh.

Wednesday (7-9) was the day we had to leave Mema and Papa's after a lovely few days visiting and one hiccup.

We got a late start b/c Sonny (my Step-Dad) had a doctor's appointment that required my mom to be his chauffeur home and I didn't want to leave Papa home alone after having a house full of people for a few days.

Just call me Mrs. Softie.

Anyway, after a few tears, hugs and promises to return again soon and my last sight being of Papa sitting in one of the patio chairs looking so tiny and alone, it was time to load up in the Kia and head back to Tennessee.

It was about 1ish when we left but our motto was the same; just arrive safely. It didn't really matter what time we made it home, just as long as we made it.

About 30 minutes from Mema and Papa's, just a mile from the freeway we needed, we took a wrong turn. That wrong turn ended up being a Godsend.

I drew a diagram to try and help "tell" the story. The black line starting
at the bottom was the road we were on. We needed to take the 
red road,
instead, we continued straight to the main road, which doesn't allow left turns
and so we had to turn right (the 
blue dotted line).

Ok, so we had missed our turn and HAD to turn right, taking us in the opposite direction of where we needed to go. We drive just a little bit up the road, until we can find somewhere to turn around. As we're heading back in the direction we need to be in, a tractor trailer comes up beside us, pointing at our right rear passenger tire.

Bleh.

30 minutes from Mema and Papa's.

6 hours away from home.

And we have a flat tire were we know where nothing is.

Fun.
Fun.
Fun.

We pull off on the side of the road to inspect the damage and figure out a plan.

Well, clearly we ain't going anywhere on a flat tire and you can't go far on a spare tire, providing it even has air.

Now remember that we've been traveling/visiting, so we have a suitcase and pillows and other items involved with traveling....plus a few extra items we're taking back; 3 trees to be exact. LOL

And ALL of it has to come out so John can access the spare tire compartment.

Then once the spare tire is put on, everything has to go BACK inside, along with a full-size tire.

Conveniently enough, there was a tire store just a few yards from where we pulled over, we had actually passed it as the truck driver was telling us about our tire.

$45 later, we have a new-to-us tire and the spare tire is returned to its proper place, everything is put back in and we're on the road once again.

At this point, we've been "stuck" for about 2 hours and decide we might as well stop for a bite to eat before we hit the freeway.

As we're sitting at Cracker Barrel, I'm thinking about the days adventures and how I believe God had a hand in it:

I've traveled that same route my entire life. I know you can't turn left onto the main road and that you have to turn before it. Then we just happen to turn out on to the road as a kind person points our our flat tire.....b/c how often do you pay attention to people's tires? Then we just happen to pass a tire store.

We could have easily gotten on the freeway before we knew we had a problem and been quite literally stuck on the side of the freeway, with a 5 year old and 80 mph traffic.

Yup, I believe God was watching out for us.

After we eat, we're finally on our way home.


I doze off and on as we motor on down the road. At one point, I send out a prayer that God protects us and gets us home safely. I ask that we not have any accidents and then quickly amend it to say that IF we have to have an accident, that my family be protected and safe.

Dun.
Dun.
Dunnnnn.

There's that "sound" again, so I bet ya know what happens next, right?

About 45 minutes from our last impromptu stop, we get off the freeway and stop at a Love's gas station for a potty break. McKayla and John go inside, while I'm sitting in the car, playing on my phone. When quite suddenly, the car starts rocking. Earthquake like. I look back to see a full size red Dodge pickup in the rear and side windows and knew, with a sickening feeling, what had just happened.

I jump out of the car, prepared for the worst; imagining my bumper being a mangled mess of metal and wondering what the hell we're gonna do miles from home.

Luckily, it was just a minor scratch, easily buffed out but being in the state-of-mind *I* was in, I thought best to get John's input on the situation. I try calling him but it turns out that McKayla was having one of her fits and he didn't hear the phone ring, so I ended up having to go inside and look for him, with the kid following along behind.

Once I find John, I tell him that we may have a problem. He sees the kid behind me and his face falls.

We go look at the car and John deems it fine and easily fixed. The kid apologizes, numerous times and John tells him 'it's fine, it was an accident'.

Wanna know how he hit us?

B/c he was a young kid who doesn't know the size of his own dang vehicle. He caught our left (drivers side) rear bumper, right behind the rear tire with the front corner of his passenger side bumper. Not a scratch, ding or dent on his chrome bumper of course.

After that fiasco was fixed and thankfully didn't take as long as the last one, we're on the road once again. Riding down said road, I start laughing and think, 'yup, God sure does have a sense of humor. I ask him to keep us safe, to avoid having a wreck but that if we have to have a wreck, he keeps my family safe'. And He did. :-) John and McKayla were inside, when they could have easily been in the car and I wasn't injured either.

You got me there God. :-)
Guess I shouldn't have mentioned it. LOL

After that, the ride home was fairly uneventful. We did decide to take the scenic route home, which by the time we made it there, was dark and rainy, so it wasn't very scenic. LOL We also had to stop at a rest stop, in the dark and pouring rain, to run to a covered picnic table so we could rewrap McKayla's foot.

We finally arrived home at almost midnight.

Thankful we'd finally made it.

Thankful that we hadn't had any more "adventures".

And thankful that I had called the neighbor before the first mishap and she'd been to the house more times than we'd originally agreed to let the dogs out. LOL

Fun times!

Don't think we'll be making any more long-distance trips in the near future! LOL

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