Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Convoy Part 2: The Drive

Note: This is the now months-overdue second part of the story of us moving all of belongings out to Denver. If you'd like to read the earlier installment, you can find the prologue here and part one here. You can also search and read old entries by using the left hand navigation table to search the archive.

Saturday, June 23rd
Hamilton, OH
7:00AM (EST)

Awake now. Not happy about this. Awake and unhappy. Must move. Cats. Cats biting face. Biting. Biting.

Saturday, June 23rd
I-275, about 30 miles west of Hamilton, OH
8:30AM (EST)

Slowly coming to. Casey helped* us attach the car the carrier and we're underway. The keys have been dropped off at the Shadow Creek lease office and we're slowly making our way down I-275 towards Indianapolis. And by slowly making our way, I mean not moving very fast down the road. The Suck's highest speed seems to be somewhere between "Sucks" and "Slam-My-Fist-Through-The-Windshield Slow." It seems to be topping out at around 60MPH... downhill.

[*Read: Did everything]

Saturday, June 23rd
I-275, about 31 miles west of Hamilton, OH
8:31AM (EST)

An identical 27-foot U-Haul pulling a similar-sized car just passed easily going 70mph. It must be this truck. Man, I sure hope we don't get passed like that again.

Saturday, June 23rd
I-275, about 32 miles west of Hamilton, OH
8:32AM (EST)

We just got passed like that again.

Saturday, June 23rd
Harrison, OH (Exit 1 - I-74)
9:20AM (EST)

Stopped off to eat at a Cracker Barrel. We're both exhausted, but now happily filled with carbs of all shapes and sizes. I also procured a much-needed cup of coffee. With caffeine surging through my veins I will be able to put another hundred or so miles behind us. I never appreciated the "Trucks, RVs, and Campers" welcome sign on the Cracker Barrel lot until today. The Suck is massive and a bear to maneuver in and out of parking lots, so the big lot at Cracker Barrel was a nice thing to find.

Saturday, June 23rd
West of Indianapolis, IN (I-70)
10:10AM (EST)

Just discovered The Suck wasn't fully gassed up before we left. We've only gone a hundred or so miles and had to put gas in it. Since it wasn't full the last time, we can't gauge the gas milage yet, but it's not looking good. Not so much.

Saturday, June 23rd
Somewhere in IL (I-70)
12:10PM (CST)

Refilled. Gas mileage so far: 5/mpg. Yes. We are able to drive 5 miles for every $3.20 of gas we pump. It costs aprox. $150 to fill the tank. At 5mpg, the gas alone should cost somewhere around $900. That woke me up.

Saturday, June 23rd
Somewhere in Missouri (I-70)
3:10PM (CST)

An alarm just went off on the dashboard of The Suck. It read "Check Guages!" and made an annoying beeping sound that is played through the car stereo speakers. We checked the gauges and everything looked fine. It went away about 30 seconds after it started. Odd.

Saturday, June 23rd
Somewhere in Kansas (I-70)
5:10PM (CST)

I picked up a flier on some hotels throughout the West. One of the places looked pretty good, so I called and reserved a room for around $50/night. The nice thing is it has easy access to the highway, a large parking (in which to stow The Suck), and free internet. So, I will write more when we get Laurence, KS. Woot!

Saturday, June 23rd
Lawrence, Kansas (I-70)
7:10PM (CST)

The hotel had a tiny a parking lot. Not a big one. I pulled the truck in, found out that it was too small to actually turn The Suck around without backing up, tried backing up, failed, tried again and again. Luckily this dude came whipping into the parking lot and walked up to the cab saying, "Hey! I used to be a truck-driver. Need some help." "Yes. Yes we do."

He had the thing turned around in about 5 minutes. It was amazing to watch. He did it with about 10 inch clearances on every corner of the truck / car.

We went into the hotel and found it's the wrong hotel. The conversation went like this.

"Having some trouble with that truck, eh?"
"Yeah, you noticed?"
"Ok. We have a reservastion under Fox."
"No you don't have a reservation or no my last name is not Fox?"
"No reservation."
"I just called here and reserved it."
"Do you have a reservation number?"
"No, I was in a giant, rattling, stinking truck with no pen. I didn't write it down."
"Sorry, no reservation."
"Ok..." I pull out the ad and show it to him, "This is your hotel, right?"
"It's our hotel, but the number is wrong."
"It's wrong?"
"Who's number is it then?"
"I have no idea."

So, I call the number and it turns out to be a different hotel in the town. For some reason, the hotel had changed it's name and telephone number.

Saturday, June 23rd
Lawrence, Kansas (I-70)
10:00PM (CST)

We've finished eating a delivered pizza from Pizza Hut. It was so good. I'm guessing the perception of quality of the food is due more to our being very hungry than any actual objective goodiness of the food. So tired... so we sleep.

Sunday, June 23rd
Denver, CO

We've arrived! Several things have happened, but I'm so late in returning to this post that I've forgotten most it. It mostly involved driving, filling up the gas tank over and over, and various warning lights blinking on and off on the dash. In couple years, I'll probably get around to writing the unpacking story. Oh! Doesn't that sound like fun? Reading an endless blog post about people unpacking. Man oh man! We do know how to keep our reader's interest here and DropMyStraw.

Epilogue: We arrived safely. Nothing was damaged in transit. We even successfully talked U-Haul into refunding nearly several hundred dollars due to all of our inconveniences. In retrospect, I'm still glad we decided to do it the way we did. Moving all of our belongs across the country makes for a much better story than it does actually experiencing it. If end up moving back to GR, I'm not sure how we will accomplish the task. I think we'll either sell everything we own and just drive home in our car, or we'll bite the bullet and let one of those crazy moving companies move us.

Our lease is up in December of '07, so it looks like we'll be moving somewhere here in the city. We just can't get enough of it, apparently.


Crash said...

WOW ! To relive it vicariously again through script. What torture!
Or pleasure. And move again in December..... you are sick!! But, alas, we will be there to help you again. 'cause we must be sick, too.
The ordeal still was a notch better than the pioneers who went out west in their covered wagons, with all their worldly possessions. Sort of like U-haul, no flashing lights, broken air conditioners, and slow-ass 5mpg. They had broken wheels, extreme heat, no gauges at all, indians (still politically correct then) dysentery, drought, starvation, freezing, death and worse (always wondered what the "and worse" always meant)

So, are the 21st century pioneers.....

And have lived to tell about it....

Anonymous said...

"And worse? No Pizza Hut!!

Mandy said...

It is so much better as a memory....