I'm sure you've stopped by for some sort of story and while I really don't feel much like writing or have anything of great importance to write about, I suppose I've got to start back at some time and so why not start with telling you about my trip to Illinois for Kenny's funeral. After all, it seems no matter the circumstances there is always something strange and in hindsight hilarious that ends up happening to me and this trip was no exception.
My dad and I had planned on leaving Thursday, February 14 around 5:30. I
got off work about 4:30 and went to pick up a salad and hummus plate
from Zoe's Kitchen and then had plans to go home and let The Tide out
before changing clothes and loading up my bag and The Tide and heading
over to my parents' house. While I was at Zoe's, my dad called and
needed me to pick up his cry cleaning because he had no clean white
shirts to wear. Also, Justin was nowhere to be found and he was to take
care of my mother while we were gone. Since Justin has no cell phone,
there is no way to get in touch with him and so we were in limbo about
whether or not to go ahead and leave town.
I picked up the dry cleaning, made it home, changed clothes, loaded up
my bag and The Tide and headed towards my parents' house. On the way, I
rolled down the back window so The Tide could enjoy some fresh air -
I've heard that dogs enjoy this because being in a car makes them sick.
Who comes up with this stuff? I also rolled down my front window a
little as well only to have the window fall and not go back up. Yes,
even Blue doesn't take time off from malfunctioning during tragic times.
As you may recall, three of my four windows have broken and been
repaired and on the day I'm leaving town for a funeral, the fourth and
final window decides to stop working. I was thrilled, as you can surely
I made it to my parents' house only to discover that my dad had borrowed
my grandmother's car (a Lincoln Town Car) for our journey. I loaded my
things into the car and went inside to eat my dinner while we waited on
Justin to make an appearance. Around 6:15 p.m. my dad decided that we
should go ahead and leave so my mom had called a few people to come and
sit with her until Justin (hopefully) showed up. My dad put my mom in
the bed and then we taped up my fallen window and we pulled out of the
driveway at 6:37 with a five hour drive in front of us.
As we were heading out of town on I-565, we noticed the traffic was
backed up right before the airport exit. Actually, my dad noticed it
more than I did. I was driving and he was on the phone and I thought it
looked like the traffic was backed up but couldn't tell for sure and
then her started frantically waving his hands about and so I realized
that yes, indeed, the traffic was backed up. So, I slammed on the brakes
of the Town Car and we luckily got stopped before slamming into the car
in front of us. The car behind us, however, did not get stopped and in
fact hit us. The driver's name was Calvin and he tried to go off into
the median (we were in the left lane) but hit the side of a little
bridge and then hit our side. Thankfully no one was injured and the car
was only barely scraped. My dad said he didn't even feel us get hit and
it's true, it was only a light bump. We were very lucky considering we
were on the interstate and everyone was driving as fast as they were.
While we sat on the side of the interstate waiting on the police to show
up we witnessed numerous cars (and even an 18-wheeler) screeching their
brakes and running off the road to avoid hitting other cars. The smell
of burnt rubber was all around and we felt for sure we were going to be
witness to some horrific car crash. Thankfully everyone got stopped and
there were no other wrecks. The Madison police showed up and were really
quick about getting us back on the road. However, both my dad and I
needed to empty our bladders so we stopped in Athens, about 15 miles
down the road.
After our pit stop, we made two other stops, one for snacks (I needed
caffeine) and another for gas. My mom had called around midnight and
asked how much longer we had. Garmin told us we had about 10 minutes
left but my dad thought an hour. Turns out Garmin was right and we
finally made it to out hotel in Marion, Illinois about 30 minutes or so
after midnight - there was construction at the exit and so we missed the
exit and had to go about six miles out of the way and turn around to
get back to the exit. We got checked in and immediately went to bed.
Apparently I was snoring within five seconds of my head hitting the
pillow. First, I didn't know I snored and second, I was pooped.
The funeral was the next morning and the minister did a terrific job. He
really knew Kenny well, or so it seemed, and he delivered a nice eulogy
and even gave us cause to laugh on occasion, which was a welcome
surprise. We left after the service and headed back south. Thankfully
the drive home was less eventful than the drive up there and we were
back in Huntsville around 5:30 p.m. It was a quick trip, but I'm glad we
went. I wanted to be there to support Jackie and her family, because as
you well know if you've been stopping by here for any amount of time,
they are also my family. Please remember to keep Jackie and her family,
especially her parents, in your prayers as they continue to deal with