“What the heck is that?” you ask? That’s what it looked like last night as we drove down the Pennsylvania Turnpike. For about 90 minutes I wondered if the state had snow plows. It was nearly as much fun as you’re imagining.
The slick roads and intermittent white-out conditions got Zeke and I thinking about road trips that went wrong, so here are our best (worst) stories from the highway of life.
To South Carolina via Urgent Care
I (Amanda) was home from college for the summer and my family had planned a road trip to Hilton Head, South Carolina. Fine by me, I love a week at the beach! Unfortunately I managed to catch a truly horrific stomach bug about 24 hours before we left town. I remember begging them to let me stay home (and puke in peace), but my parents were having none of that.
In addition to our various suitcases and bags of books and snacks, we packed a bucket and several plastic grocery bags. We drove down to about the Virginia/North Carolina line and stopped for lunch at Cracker Barrel. I wasn’t ready to eat anything, but I had a delicious grape soda. It didn’t stay down long and I was feeling worse than when we left Maryland, so my parents decided to stop at an Urgent Care in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. If memory serves, we spent about an hour there, culminating in a shot in my hip with some kind of magic serum that kept me from puking and knocked me out cold for the duration of the drive.
Even when we arrived in Hilton Head, I was so sick and my stomach so sensitive I couldn’t even put on my pajama shorts. I was hunkered down in our rental unit wearing only a t-shirt and using a blanket as a loose-fitting skirt for days. I’m thankful the unit had an exceptionally soft leather couch; I spent many quality hours there.
Once my health was restored I truly enjoyed the vacation, but those first few days were pretty awful.
When he was 16 turning 17, Zeke went on a cross-country trip with his family in their Plymouth Voyager. Somewhere in the vicinity of Jackson, Wyoming, Zeke’s sister (Andrea) started suffering from hypothermia. It was the first sign of illness, but she had been sick for some time. She was weak, she didn’t want to eat, and Zeke’s parents wisely whisked her to a local clinic.
The doctor was able to diagnose that she had a strep infection in her stomach. He prescribed antibiotics and rest, so the westward journey was put on hold for a few days while she recovered in a tent at the KOA. Zeke remembers how miserable she was, at that the close quarters (and the fact they were camping) didn’t seem to help matters.
Everyone survived the Changuris’ Great Western Adventure, but Zeke says Oregon Trail came to mind constantly.