when we began, i was wide-eyed and believed that although i was rushed…i was ready and excited to take photos, to blog, to explore, and to text like a capable person, who was enjoying a roadtrip. i was confident in my driving abilities, my critical thought process, my ability to stay calm under pressure, my spatial packaging eye, and my navigational skills.
i did so well as i drove from nevada to california, staying with buggs in a denny’s parking lot. it was the plan all along and i was proud of myself and buggs for making it those ten hours, we set the clock and went to sleep. the next morning we would be picking up “bear,” a cat in fremont. then we would point our car toward walnut creek and pick-up four more cats a a dog. i had told the girl’s before hand that i knew how to stack and could fit everyone, no problem.
we arrived and all was as i had envisioned. stack of cats, “olivia’s” bed and olivia, and buggs and his bed. we rolled on. i will say that hauling animals is a tedious task. one never takes into account how many times pets will have to go potty or drink water.
i was tired when i left henderson, bleary eyed, and i guess that i never thought that my fifteen pound dog would be so afraid and uncomfortable at first.
we began driving up northern california stopping at beautiful landmarks to take potty walks and photos and feed and water the cats. i sent each owner a photo of their pet, at each stop. i also stopped to play the lyric game with j**s or send her a photo of landscape that was not the desert. we kept each other going. her through work and me through driving tedium.
at lake shasta, this began to change. what began as a carefree fun, epic adventure became a hassle, a worry, a realization that i was solely responsible for people’s beloved pets, threw me for a loop earlier and now, as i was smelling sonething foul coming from the back seat. it was pitch black, there was no where to pull off, and a cat was “throwing” urine on me. i couldn’t see and was surrounded by big trucks. i sang religious songs to the animals until i was able to pull over and began calling everyone i know.
only one person answered, r*****d. he called me a fucking moron and that was the one thing that i needed to carry me on to spokane…anger is an incredible motivator for me and i was pissed off, all of my charges arrived safely. my car became unsexy, but i was told that “we” would make her sexy again.
that “voice of reason,” never left my side. sure, she went to bed and to work, but she was there for me, like no other ever has been, or probably will be. she wanted to know because she cared. it was always beyond me, even after four months i didn’t and don’t get it. she is there for me and i try to be there for her, too. i want to be there for her, someone that she can count upon for anything.
that morning of august 25, a hysterical kw, who could take no more, asked for guidance. j**s understood that i needed a game plan fast. she told me to get a hotel room and wanted me and buggs to get clean, eat, and hydrate. she wanted me to rest. she said, “we will make a plan when you wake.” i was so tired and so thankful to have a plan.
j**s checked in with us throughout the day and gave us many valid options and solutions for continuing on our journey. buggs and i checked out and tried to figure out where to sleep and where to go. i wasn’t my amiable self, i was angry. i didn’t respond to j**s. i just wanted to drive from spokane to pasco. (i had backed into a car in spokane and got popped speeding in connell, but was just given warning.).
we slept in the wal-mart parking lot. buggs woke up and j**s had not left a text. we were driving to mcdonald’s when she sent me a death cab for cutie lyric. it melted my heart and once again, i was asking the captain for wisdom. she let me know that my mission was successful and that after every mission the troops return to their base camp. she absolutely got me and gave me exactly what i needed.
she gave me an answer and qualified it, utilizing something that i would understand. she is the only one that offered me smart real world suggestions. she cared enough about us to know where we were and where we were going. she wanted to see me be a success for myself. she allowed me to fix my own problems, but offered suggestions and guidance.
i appreciate her and someday, i wish that she would consider becoming my travel partner…
part one only