Bittersweet Symphony – the words that came to mind when I made the decision. Was I up to this? Physically? There was only one way to find out and that was to just do it.
Lots of memories at the South Forty but more importantly, I wondered if I was up for the long trip because of health issues. Apparently, nine years of not absorbing nutrients had played havoc with the old body. Two stomach surgeries later (seriously, a gastric bypass at 128 lbs.?), with the bypass being within the last couple of months, I was finally ready to do it or die trying. Well, I really hoped dying wouldn’t be the case because I really wanted to do it!
So I over-packed and went prepared for any medical emergency that could or has happened to me, along with too many clothes but hey, I didn’t know what I was going to be doing. After making my lists, checking them twice, loading up, giving instructions to the caretaker of Hershey, the WonderDog, I finally pulled out of the driveway, off into parts known and unknown and looking forward to the road trip very much! (Big Grin)!
It was perfect, the road trip. Chatted with some interesting people at rest areas, especially a couple of guys heading to the mountains to camp. They had this cool little teardrop trailer. That led to an inspection of said trailer. Very cool and no rush. Enjoyed the conversation with complete strangers who enjoyed something I did also.
I saw the first mountain at Exit 123. I always know I’ll see the first mountain here. It’s a baby but hey, it’s still up there in the sky. Right then and there, I went from Eastern Shore mode to South Forty mode. Happens every time because I feel that ‘peaceful, easy feeling’ come over me (courtesy of the Eagles). I’m here, well not really ‘here’ yet but close enough to know I’m almost where I want to be. Very interesting how this happens, and happens ever time I travel that way. All I can say is there must be something very special out there that the spirit is attached to.
I could not have asked for a better interstate driving day; traffic flowed smoothly, very few truckers were on the road and no accidents. Cruising at 80 mph (oh yea!); and I was the slow one; that is until about 20 miles east of the Continental Divide. Thunderstorm. When I say thunderstorm, I mean thunderstorm, complete with blinding rain, sharp lightning and thunder that could deafen a person. Traffic came to a standstill, as in stopped, on the side of the interstate. Flashers everywhere but I could only see the flashers of the car in front of me. Nobody was moving; nobody could see through that rain. Lightning coming down all around us in big, jagged bolts, thundering almost before the lightning would strike. Nowhere to go; we were all on our own. I just knew one or two or twenty of us were going to get zapped good with one of those bolts! We probably sat around about 20 minutes before it eased up enough we could actually drive but you can believe it weren’t 80 mph this time.
By the time I started over the Continental Divide, it looked like night. It was eerily dark with all those storm clouds; drippy, hanging fog; and a wet road that was even darker. I kind of felt like I was in an Edgar Allen Poe story, just waiting for the crow. I love driving over the Continental Divide – fast – but this wasn’t going to happen. Just a little too risky and yes, I wasn’t the only one behaving (Big Grin)!
End of the day destination up ahead. Tentative plans (I don’t like to plan!) for the next day but didn’t know if the weather would cooperate. I decided to stop at said destination anyway because if Plan A didn’t work out, Plan B was a definite, much more fun and interesting!
I was happy and my buttocks were sore (Big Laugh!). All my natural cushioning has vanished (I have no butt since I can’t seem to gain the weight back – Big Grin)! Being the lady that lives in Gypsy – The Airstream, I was finally sleeping in a real bed after a year and a half (not counting that hospital wannabe bed), had a TV complete with cable, an a/c that worked wonders and hot water that did not ever run out! Physically, I was tired and it didn’t take long to get sleepy, but I was there, I had made it, and I did pat myself on the back.
Yep, I’d say day one of my Return to the South Forty was pretty darn good.
To be continued…….