Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Does U-Haul Make Moving Easier?

Does U-Haul Make Moving Easier? So we made it out of Chicago. There was still some rush-hour traffic. When Eileen called to see how it was going, we'd been driving for over an hour and were still ranging at speeds of 10-45 mph but at least we were always moving. We made it out of the city, across Illinois and the Mississippi River and past Davenport. We'd just called people we were planning to connect with in Des Moines the next day. Everything was lined up and seemed to be falling into place. It was going to be around midnight when we got to our hotel but that was do-able. Then came the thwump sound.

I asked, "What was that?" Cam said, "It was nothing." A few mintues later, there it was again. I said, "I think it was a tire." Can said, "It is something in the back." Then this family drove by, pointing at our tire. I had never had a blow-out before and was having visions of the U-Haul flipping into westbound traffic on I-80. Cam had been checking the alignment the whole time, thinking that if we had a problem with a tire, the U-Haul would be pulling to one side or the other. I wanted him to pull over right away, on the side of the road. Luckily, he was a bit more prudent and slowed down but got us safely to the next exit.

We were literally in the middle of nowhere. No gas stations only what appeared to be an abandoned chicken farm.
Thank God for cell phones. What did we do without them? Cam got on ours and told the folks at U-Haul that we'd lost all of the tread on the inside back tire on the driver's side. They said they'd call back within 30 minutes. They called back w/in 20 to tell us they would send someone out to repair the tire and that they'd be there w/in an hour and a half. This whole incident could have be terrible but since everyone was fine, we just chilled out and laughed about it. The fields surrounding us were lit up by one of the most impressive displays of firefly action I remember seeing and I grew up in rural Kansas. Sam had fun catching them and I did too.

The repair truck made it from Davenport in good time. However, while the repairman was changing the tire, Cam saw him shake his head. When asked about this, he said that the other tire on that side was shot too. He asked how far we were going. When we answered, California, he said there was no way that tire would make it. Since we were only going to Des Moines that night, he thought we'd be ok. We made it to our hotel room and everyone crashed.

The next morning, Cam called U-Haul and explained the situation. He convinced them to send someone out about the other tire. Luckily, we were planning to spend a bit of time connecting with friends and family there that morning anyway. While we were eating breakfast and catching up with our friends Matt & Tracey, the tire was replaced.

Later that morning, Sam was picked up by his uncle, Brian and cousin, Patience to spend some time with relatives on his dad's side of the family. We miss him but are glad he was excused from the rest of the drive west. This time, there were no detours to the Dinosaur National Monument. And it has been nice knowing he is having fun jumping on a trampoline, playing monopoly and making noodles from scratch while we are unpacking, car shopping, etc. This weekend, he will be picked up my my folks and spend a couple of weeks with them before heading to the Powell Family Reunion in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina this year. I will fly into Raleigh and arrive in Myrtle Beach, back with Sam again just in time to be with him on his ninth birthday. I can't wait.

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