Editor's note: Dave and Serena are traveling cross country this week to move Serena out to Colorado. Dave will be keep us up to date through his journey via this site. All entries written by Dave will be entitled, "Dave This".
Vail or Bust
So, we're here... arrived about 8:00pm Mountain time. And to put to rest any fears you might have, no we did not crash - in Erick, OK or otherwise. I have a lot to catch you up on since I missed yesterday's travel update, so here goes.
We left Memphis Wednesday around 12:00pm, and headed west on I-40 towards Little Rock, eventual destination Oklahoma City. About 30 minutes outside of Little Rock, the heavens opened and rain poured for the next couple of hours. Poured, mind you... not "little bitty stinging rain," but "big ole fat rain." Bonus points if you got that movie reference.
Once over the Oklahoma border, the rain mostly ceased to the point where the wipers were only clearing the mist kicked up by those in front of us. That was nice. But then the ominous warnings came about the weather and road conditions in Oklahoma City. However, being the troopers that we are, we pressed forth regardless of icy roads, abandoned cars on the shoulder of the highway, or condensation on the inside of the car that had now frozen to the windshield. (The ice scraper was actually used *inside* the car. Sweet!)
Our Oklahoma City experience was actually pretty uneventful, with the exception of a brief encounter with a curb while trying to exit the interstate to get gas. (It was slippery, okay? Back off.) After the quick stop we continued west, our new goal to make it to Amarillo, Texas. This route was an attempt to skirt the stormy weather that was clogging up travel in all points north of us.
So -- when we last heard from our heros, they were stuck in a backwoods portion of Oklahoma with no internet and low property values. As it turned out, Amarillo proved to be a bit too ambitious for a 500 mile day of very stressful driving that actually clocked in at 12 hours behind the wheel. Thus, we stopped in Erick (as you have read about and explored via this wonderful tool known as the internet) at a delightful Days Inn. We were tired, they accepted pets, and the price was right - perfect for us.
This morning (Thursday) we departed at 10:00am with our sights set on the final goal - Vail. Today's drive was like taking candy from a baby compared to yesterday's freakin' meteorological assault. The weather was beautiful, the drive was beautiful, and - aside from driving through a snowstorm during the final 90 miles - we arrived virtually unscathed. As a natural born southerner, it was my first experience driving in real snow, and my education was not yet complete...
Upon reaching the lodge, Serena directed me to a parking lot and said, "Well, we'll have to park here and carry our things up the hill to the lodge, because I don't think we can make it up the hill in the car." (If you know me at all, you know where this is going.) I swerved and slipped my way back out to the road and met the hill in question, popping the car into first gear. Ever been wrong? Happened to me. We got about halfway up but couldn't get enough traction to make it to the top, so I put the car in reverse and began gently backing down the hill to return to the parking lot. There was a turn involved here, which I made too soon and backed us directly into a 3 foot snow bank. Drive forward, right? Nope. Stuck we were, until fellow lodge dwellers came and gave us a push while I floored the gas pedal to lurch out of the rut we were in. Oops.
But we're here!!! And fun times in the snow await us tomorrow. And currently, we are awaiting the chinese food delivery guy to bring us a decent meal, since we have lived off of Subway, Wendy's, McDonalds, Arby's, Taco Bell, KFC, and trail mix for the past three days. Thanks to all for your concern - now we simply have to avoid breaking a leg while skiing!
Oh - and if you ever desire to spend 1,800 miles in the car with another person and a cat? Please make sure you really, REALLY love this person before attempting it. That and be sure to stock up on cat prozac first.
See ya'll soon.
Dave and Serena