Ha! Have you ever noticed that when you’re bound and determined to follow the plan you believe God’s set out for you, all of a sudden one thing after another seems to go wrong?
So started our road trip to move Jeffrey to his dream college in Arizona (Last Surgery).
We had scheduled 3 days to drive there – hoping to do about 8 hours a day. We figured that was enough time for us all to be in the car together daily. Why? Because unfortunately when we’re cooped up together for longer than that, we start to get on each other’s nerves!
So anyway, the day arrived – and we were all so excited!
We got off to a late start because Gary had a conference call. So it wasn’t until about 11:30 AM by the time we actually got on the road. Our van was packed to the gills, with barely enough room to see out the back window.
First stop – make sure we had a full gas tank.
We stopped at our favorite local gas station and got the tank filled up by a nice gas attendant (yes, Oregon still had attendants). But then as we were pulling away from the pump, we noticed one of them trying to flag us down.
“You’re leaking gas!”
What? We pulled over, and sure enough, the gas was just streaming out from under the van. What was going on – and why now?
However the Lord provided for us, as always.
One of the men at the gas station told us about a repair shop just across the street that did really great work. We limped over, and Gary got out of the car to go in and chat with them.
How awesome it was that the person behind the desk was the owner of the shop! As Gary explained what we were attempting to do in getting our son moved to college, he made his technicians stop what they were working on, and immediately they got our van in the garage to take a look at it.
However in order for them to get the van up on the lifts, we needed to get Jeffrey dislodged from the back seat, which meant we had to unpack a lot of stuff.
Thankfully there was an Arby’s right next door, so as they were looking at the van, I took Jeffrey over and we ate an early lunch.
Gary came over not too long after, and told us that they found the leak. There were a few cracks in the tubing underneath the van – and they had the necessary parts! We were able to get back on the road about an hour later.
We now decided we better try and drive at least 6 hours that day, hoping to make it down to northern California where we would spend the night. We’d try to get an early start the next day. We needed to stick to our schedule and not take any longer, because we had meetings with DDD for Jeffrey’s disability payments scheduled for the day after our arrival.
We finally made it to Redding, California, and pulled into a local hotel to spend the night. There was a restaurant right next door, so we walked over and grabbed a quick bite before settling in for the night.
Finally we were in the room, and of course I realized I’d left something out in the car.
So back outside I trudged, but then as I was circling around the back of the van I noticed that some liquid was flowing (and I do mean flowing) from our tailpipe.
Oh no, Lord. Now what?
I dipped my finger in the liquid (like I’ve seen in the movies) and decided to taste it. It tasted like water – that was weird!
I went inside and told Gary, but he really wasn’t concerned at that point, saying he’d look at it in the morning. He said it was probably just the air conditioning unit cooling down.
The next morning we awoke to a beautiful sunny California day, and as we re-packed the van, Gary took at look around the tailpipe, but didn’t see anything wrong. Well that was good news!
So we headed out. It was due to be a really hot day – especially since we were set to drive through the Mojave Desert.
Yes, to be continued… sorry folks!