Glad That’s Over

 Posted by at 12:05 am  Nick's Blog
Feb 112023

I said in yesterday’s blog that we only had a few things left to pack at our Florida house, and that with any luck at all we’d be on the road by noon. We actually pulled out of the driveway at 11:30, me driving the pickup pulling the cargo trailer and Terry following in her Chrysler Pacifica.

We both needed gas so we stopped at the Buc-ee’s in Daytona Beach and promptly lost that extra half hour leaving early got us. I pulled into a fuel island behind a Ford pickup with a gas hose stuck in the tank, only to realize nobody was at the truck. The idiot had begun fueling and then went inside. The place was so busy that there was no way I could back out or had enough room to pull around him. So I waited. And waited. And waited some more.

Meanwhile, Terry had filled the van’s tank and pulled away to park off to the side, waiting for me. Eventually there was enough of a break in the activity to allow me to pull around the unattended truck to another pump, where I filled my tank. Just about the time I was done and getting back in my Ram, the clod and his woman companion from the Ford came strolling back to their truck, their arms loaded with goodies and shopping bags hanging off both their arms. Clueless idiots.

Back on Interstate 95 we continued north to Jacksonville, where we got on Interstate 10 westbound. Even though we were in bed by 10:30 the night before and didn’t get up until 8 yesterday morning, we were still both exhausted. This move and the repeated trips back to Florida have taken a toll on us and we’re glad it’s finally over. Or will be once we get back to our place in Alabama today.

Pulling the cargo trailer really eats up my fuel mileage, and by the time we got to Live Oak, just a little past Lake City, I needed to refuel again so we stopped at Busy Bee, which is a Florida version of Buc-ee’s. Terry didn’t need gas, so she waited off to the side while I filled my tank. With that done, we discovered that the clod who was blocking the pump at Buc-ee’s must have a brother who drives an eighteen-wheeler because one had pulled in at the Busy Bee and was parked blocking the only way in or out, and the driver was nowhere to be seen. There was a tangle of vehicles stuck in the area by the gas pumps, all wanting to get out, and cars lined up down the road trying to get in. Some people in pickups were even driving over the curbs and across the grass. Finally, a store employee came out and managed to clear the traffic jam enough for one vehicle at a time to narrowly squeeze past the back of the empty truck and get back on the road. Is the world full of inconsiderate fools who don’t care how much they inconvenience everybody else? I am beginning to suspect so.

As we continued west on I-10 I was fighting to stay awake and alert, and at one point I must have drifted off momentarily because I opened my eyes and I had strayed into the next lane, which was occupied by another vehicle. That scared me and gave me an adrenalin burst! I opened all four windows in the truck and cranked up the AC to full blast.

Then it began to rain, and before long, visibility was getting bad. We had hoped to get to Troy, Alabama, a distance of 430 miles, but we decided to stop in Quincy, Florida instead, about 130 miles short of our goal, because we were just too darned tired to continue, especially in the rain. But fate had other plans for us.

A few miles east of Tallahassee an accident had one lane of the interstate closed, which created a backup as everybody tried to squeeze into the right lane. We managed to get through that, then as we were coming into Tallahassee, traffic alert signs said an accident ahead had all lanes closed and to exit the highway. My GPS took us down a narrow two-lane road in the pouring rain, and at the point about where we crossed into Georgia I swear heard a couple of hillbillies playing Dueling Banjos. Eventually we got onto US Highway 27, which took us to Bainbridge and US Highway 84, which we followed west to Dothan, Alabama.

By then we were fried mentally and physically, and we stopped at the Hampton Inn for the night. Except for a stop at Dunkin Donuts that morning when we checked out of our hotel in Edgewater, we had not eaten anything all day. We were too tired to go far in search of food, so since the rain had lessened but not stopped, we walked to an Arby’s next door for a quick dinner before going back to our room.

We are 230 miles from Gordo, which the GPS says is about a four-hour drive. But the rain is supposed to be an all-day event today so I expect we’ll add at least an hour to that. But whatever it takes, we just want to get home.

Thought For The Day – We live in an era of smartphones and stupid people.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  6 Responses to “Glad That’s Over”

  1. Florida didn’t want to see you leave w/the challenges at the fuel stops and traffic and rain. Hopefully the remainder of your trip will be event-free. You’ll be singing Sweet Home Alabama soon. Travel safely and enjoy a well-deserved rest when you arrive home.

  2. Safe travels! And I think you are totally correct about the “inconsiderate fools”–I had the same experience yesterday in Willcox, AZ trying to get gas!

  3. Sure hope you get home safely! Driving tired is a version of hell.

    Is the world full of inconsiderate fools who don’t care if they inconvenience anyone else? Yes.

  4. I have to add my story. I thought I was going to have a similar experience as I pulled up to the diesel island at Sams in Daytona, behind a car hauler. After waiting about 15 mins,I got out and walked up to find out if he was closer to starting or finishing. Nice guy offered to guide me around his rig with my dually and guide me backing up to the front pump. Then we both kept the island occupied as I had to take on 80 gal. We finished about the same time 25 mins later. I’m sure the folks in line were thinking about ‘inconsiderate fools’. But at least we stayed with the trucks. Hope you have a safe trip, and enjoy the quiet in Alabama. We missed the chance to meet you while we were Edgewater neighbors. Jeannine

  5. Nick, on a positive note, at least you won’t have to do this again!

    Thinking about your smart phone and stupid people comment, people no longer have to be smart with. We have AI now which will be replacing all people, smart and stupid.
    Check it out, you only have to be smart enough to ask a question then the AI called CHATGPT will solve answer any question or write a nice poem or love letter for your significant other. On a less optimistic thought, it will even write a mystery novel for you! You just give it a theme with a few characters and it will do the research and then write the story. Check it out at Chat.OpenAI.Com

  6. I used to really enjoy driving when I was younger, but now I hate long-haul driving now.
    I reckon you should stay where you are now – forever!

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