In Part 1 of my mini series for a Trip of Unfortunate Events, I explained some of the work it takes before I even hit the road for one of my travel teaching tours. I also mentioned how most trips are a really great adventure, but this last trip was the Trip of Unfortunate Events.
This trip started like most, but once I was finally on the road, I experienced the first hiccup in Georgia when my car just stopped on an exit ramp off I95. To make matters worse, I was the first vehicle at the red light exit with many vehicles behind me. On the exit ramp, there was nowhere for anyone to go around me and people were just honking their horns and hollering. I panicked and was extremely embarrassed. Thankfully, the car cranked back up after turning the ignition completely off and restarting. Whew! Disaster averted, let’s refuel while I’m here and carry on. My brother wasn’t far away, so thankfully I had planned in an extra day (for instances just like this), so I went to his house to have him look at my car. I noticed the battery level was different than usual, so we questioned battery, starter, or alternator. But this is just a minor thing, so why share and make a big deal out of it, huh?
Little brother couldn’t find anything specific wrong with my vehicle. Then again, we couldn’t even find the battery. Thank goodness for YouTube because my owner’s manual was not a lot of help. We discovered that my battery is actually located in the floorboard of the backseat. I’ve had this Chevy Traverse for three years and never knew that. We decided to take it to a parts store and have it checked with computer diagnostic. Nothing could be found with any diagnostic tests and the incident had not happened again, so back on the road I go considering this just a fluke.
I arrived at my first teaching destination in the beautiful mountains of Tennessee for a fun stamping retreat hosted by Your Scrapbook Superstore. Checked into a beautiful room and got a good night’s sleep. Spent a few days enjoying the beauty with Toto.
I even had the chance to meet up with my friend Tanner Bell for dinner and some business chatting. All good so far.
Until I go out on Saturday to get some teaching supplies from my car. Open up back of car and hatchback falls down on me. Thank goodness, I wasn’t hurt. I had the whole morning open before class, so I took car to local Chevy place only to find out service department doesn’t work on Saturdays. Again, where would we be without YouTube? I found many great tutorials explaining how easy it was to replace the hydraulic tailgate lifts with a screwdriver. Visited a local auto parts store and purchased two brand new hydraulic lifts. But hey, I’m by myself, so who is going to hold the hatch while I do this? Broom from Glinda to the rescue! But how can I hold camera, take pictures or video, while trying to prop open hatchback and replace simple hydraulic lifts? Besides, let’s fix it and move on. (see where my thinking always goes 🙂 ? )
Wrapped up in Tennessee and headed to Kentucky to visit a DecoArt and my dear friend Beth Moore. Beth has a fabulous blog, So Much Moore, and has been a friend for many years. We homeschooled our kids for many years together here in Florida before they moved away, so I was super excited to see her again. Beth lives off a busy street and my challenge was to back Glinda in at a 90-degree angle without obstructing traffic for too long. I’m doing much better at backing Glinda, but not when I have to turn at an angle. I have a tendency to jackknife real quick. This was no exception, and I crunched the front of Glinda just a tad as well as transferring blue paint on the right tail lights of my car. Oh well, no real damage, right? I only had an evening to spend with Beth and family, but it was so great to see her.
It was a real treat to visit DecoArt and see where and how the paints are made. I had the chance to meet with many of the people you never hear from that work hard behind the scenes to create, package, promote, and ship these paints to your local stores.
They even allowed me a private Behind the Scenes tour of the factory and gave me permission to film and share this quick video.
After leaving Kentucky, I headed toward New York. I knew I’d have to stay the night on the road and planned on staying at a Flying J. Surprisingly, when I finally pulled over for the night and planned to stop, the Flying J was full and there were no spots to pull into and sleep anywhere nearby. I tried to get back on the road and drive to another one, but I was getting really tired and knew it wasn’t safe to drive. I pulled over to sleep at a WalMart. I don’t feel as safe in a WalMart, but I needed some sleep. Trying to get in and out of the trailer started becoming quite a challenge as I could not shut the door completely from the inside. I’m wondering if my little jackknife crunch affected more than I thought. Or has all the travel, bad roads, and pot holes finally taking their toll on Glinda. The door frame seems to be off just a bit. After slamming the door shut and locking it, and placing a bunch of stuff in front of door (did I tell you I don’t feel as safe at Walmart?), I did crash out fully dressed just to grab a few hours of sleep.
Back on the road first thing does provide me the chance to see a beautiful sunrise. Though excuse the dirty front window. 😉
I made it to New York a little early and thankfully, my dear friend, Theresa Cifali, allowed me to crash at her house with last minute notice. I can’t tell you how much it truly means to me that I do have true friends all over the country – not just virtual friends or acquaintances, but TRUE friends. Even better, Theresa always cooks a home cooked meal for me. 🙂
The next day, we went over to visit Beacon Adhesives. I was excited for another chance at BTS tour. Unfortunately, I was not allowed to take pictures inside for this trip and I totally respect their proprietary rights for that. While there, I also picked up Beacon Adhesives to share with my classes. In addition, I received samples of brand new PowerTac! This stuff is awesome. Super strong adhesive without the strong smell.
Overall, not a bad trip, huh? I told you there was plenty of good too, but I’m sure you are wondering why I’m calling this the Trip of Unfortunate Events with just a few hiccups along the way? Fasten your seatbelts, there is more to come! The good, the bad, and the ugly…