I realize now what has been missing in these posts. No narrative is complete without some challenge that must be overcome. A journey through beginning, middle, and end without event is so terribly unfulfilling. Volcano, Twister, Earthquake, San Andreas, Armageddon, Deep Impact, The Perfect Storm, The Core, The Day After Tomorrow, 2012, Godzilla, Cloverfield, King Kong, Gorgo, Pacific Rim, Jurassic Park, The Birds, Titanic, Fail-Safe, War of the Worlds, Independence Day*, Mars Attacks!, World War Z, and many others devote most of their screen time to things being destroyed. So, today, we learned our lesson. Moreover, driving a car that is over 30 years old almost guarantees that something is going to go wrong.
Though, it did seem that everything was going right. We had a relaxing morning. We enjoyed a lovely breakfast with friends in St. Louis. We took our time to get into the car. And once we were on the road, we only had a 5 hour drive ahead of us to get to Nashville. We crossed through into Illinois with little fanfare. Yet, when moved on to Kentucky, the troubles began.
These last few days have had several weather events—from the tornadoes on Wednesday to flooding—. In a continuation of this turbulent weather, we drove into a deluge. The rain was so heavy that cars pulled to the side of the road to wait out the storm, while others put on their emergency blinkers to increase visibility. Traffic slowed to a crawl. Yet, we steadily progressed until we heard a sound that initially sounded like hail. Unfortunately, it wasn’t hail. It was broken windshield wiper and the harsh thudding of the mechanism desperately trying to perform its task. We made our way to the nearest gas station, to diagnose the issue, but with a car where most of its parts are no longer manufactured, diagnosis did not mean resolution. The mechanism was broken and would have to be replaced.
Then comes the question: what to do? It is late in the evening and we have friends waiting for us in Nashville. On the other hand, we have no idea how long this storm will continue nor how far it stretches. One thing I do know: the wind is pushing to storm towards Nashville. We have already driven miles into the storm. Those are miles that would have to pass over us and Nashville if we were to try to wait out the storm.
As we were only an hour from our final destination, we pushed on and eventually drove out of the storm, allowing the wind against the car to dry away any remaining water. By the time we made it to Nashville, the outside of the car was dry. Unfortunately, the storm relieved some new cracks in the exterior so that the inside of the car was not so dry. There is always something to do.
Moving from the weather themed disaster to the animal themed: we made the mistake of leaving the door to where we are staying open. While I am glad that some horror themed slasher didn’t wander in, the feral cat that did wasn’t that much better. In an attempt to get the cat outside, my palm and wrist were slashed open along with several smaller cuts along both of my wrists and forearms. Now I am learning a lot about cat scratch disease and repeatedly slathering Neosporin on the cuts and they gradually clot closed. Luckily, they aren’t quite deep enough to need stitches. Yah, know? I used to like cats.
*A favorite film for the 4th.