Day 1 - Semper Gumby

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North America » United States » Kentucky » Louisville
July 19th 2013
Published: July 20th 2013
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Aaaaaaaanndd they're off!! Months of planning and anticipation culminated in our (almost) on time departure this morning, leaving the US Capital in our rear view mirror for a month as we steer the loaded-down 21st century model family truckster westward.

As Todd encouraged the kids to rise to the occasion for the next 28 days by exhibiting more than their typical level of patience and flexibility it didn't take long for our first opportunity to model the same to arise. Within a few hours of driving, the conversation went something like:

(Tap, tap, tap, tap)

Marcia: "Would whoever is making that tapping noise please stop?"

(tap, tap, tap, tap)

Marcia: "I mean it - stop tapping!"

(Tap, tap, tap, tap)

Marcia (twisting around to discover no one is tapping): "Huh, that can't be good."

After opening the sunroof and sticking my head out to confirm our suspicions, we discovered that our brand new car top carrier was bouncing hard enough for the front end to tap the top of the car. Unexpected stop #1 - rest stop in Kentucky to unload and repackage the carrier to redistribute weight.

Back on the road - tap, tap, tap, tap. Not good.

Unexpected stop #2. Lowe's in Morehead, KY, to buy the tool we forgot to pack so we can adjust the luggage rack rails and broaden the base for the carrier. Unload the carrier, unattach the carrier, move the rails, reattach the carrier, reload the luggage, and then...wait for it...SUCCESS!! No more tap, tap, tap, tap. Our first (flexible and patient) small victory. Gumby has nothing on us!

We had planned to stop in Lexington, only to find that something called Briarfest and a couple of conferences in town meant no rooms at (any of ) the inns. So, onward to Louisville, and here we sit, 13 1/2 hours into our trip, pleased as punch with ourselves for problem-solving without stress on the first day, and having a marvelous time. The kids are phenomenal travelers, as in we have to insist they vacate the vehicle every few hours for food and bathroom breaks. Really, I think they would sit in those seats for 12 hours straight if we let them.

Heading to St. Louis to visit with Marcia's extended family overnight, eager to see wide open plains and majestic mountains, but looking forward to the journey from here to there as well.

Thanks for tagging along with us. Until tomorrow.


Additional photos below
Photos: 8, Displayed: 8


Departure TimeDeparture Time
Departure Time

We hit the highway (almost) on time!
Sean loves Angry BirdsSean loves Angry Birds
Sean loves Angry Birds

Angry Birds & Star Trek in one sticker book - what could be better?
Like father like sonLike father like son
Like father like son

Making the most of our first unexpected stop - Todd & Tommy check out the historical marker at the rest stop in KY
Lowes & Todd to the rescueLowes & Todd to the rescue
Lowes & Todd to the rescue

Thank goodness for GPS, Yelp, and the ubiquity of Lowe's! And Todd's problem-solving capacity!

20th July 2013

Making the journey the point
Excellent start. We are Methodists, after all, so the trip is as important as the goal. Off to CA today. Will miss you. Chuck is in Denver for next week so if you need on-site help, call his cell: 202-441-0529. Love to all. Sue
20th July 2013

Don't forget to give the camera to Todd or one of the kids so we can see pictures of you. And BTW, you are a terrific writer! Dad & Judy
20th July 2013

Hi folks, You sound so composed and organized, calm, happy, FLEXIBLE - and you left almost on time (did the schedule say (9:30, 9:00, 8:30, - this little item was omitted so I didn't know if it was one minute late or.....) Whatever, it was impressive, but even more so was the capital in the rear view mirror as you left from Yucatan St. Satellite ?? I was sure the "tap,tap" was some animal (2 or 4 legged, or winged) and was on the edge of my coffee seat, when your head went out the sunroof. Really impressed with your expertise at solving the problem, Todd! Your father would have been proud - more so, your brother! And what an impressive group of "old fogies" in Cracker Barrel rockers. Watch those age names, however! Most impressive is that I sat with my coffee this morning and shared it all with you! Thanks, Marcia! Your first day seemed too controlled! Things will get better! And Tommy, it was a "where's Waldo" picture with you and your Dad. Finally found your head! Needed more coffee! Carry on - be careful! Love, love, Grandma

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