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Travels with Laura

Our youngest daughter, Laura, recently completed graduate school.  She went to East Tennessee State in Johnson City—one of the most scenic places I’ve ever been.  It’s part of the Appalachian mountain chain and is surrounded with rolling hills, valleys, and a few smaller mountains. There are small farms with old barns, and generally just a lot of the rural flavor I grew up with but now is hard to find.

The weekend of graduation we loaded up my truck and Janice and I brought it home while Laura remained in Johnson City to wrap up some loose ends and get the rest of her things ready to move.  I arrived the following Sunday night and was not prepared for the enormous amount of items (boxed and unboxed), that awaited me in her living room.  I’m pretty sure they were taunting me.

A little back story here:  Laura had graciously agreed to sell a great washer and dryer she had purchased a couple of years ago for next to nothing so we could get everything in her Honda Accord and my Toyota Tundra truck.  (Don’t feel too sorry for her, she sold them for twice what she paid). Of course, I was the chief proponent of this plan, because I didn’t want to rent a trailer and pull it behind my truck.  I was pretty sure I had been adamant that we would be able to get everything in our two vehicles.  Now I was almost as sure there was no way that was going to happen.  The first thing we did was spend some time discussing what options we had if everything didn’t fit.  Basically there weren’t any that were decent.  I had painted myself into a corner. 

The thing about Laura is that she tends to thrive in chaos (this obviously comes from Janice).  She’s one of those people who looks at everything as an adventure and that really takes the stress out of situations like this.  We actually had a good time loading the vehicles.  We laughed when we had to turn the mattress and box spring up on their ends because we had to have every inch of space that gave us (we actually turned a lot of things up on their ends). I told her the Beverly Hillbillies would be embarrassed by what my truck was going to look like.  After everything was loaded, she brought out her vacuum cleaner. There was no room anywhere so I had to tie it to the side of the truck. 

In the end, we made it. My truck bed, backseat, and passenger seat were all filled to the brim.  The same was true with Laura's Accord.  In fact, we had to rearrange some stuff in her passenger seat so she could see out her side mirror (our rear-view mirrors were useless due to the enormity of things piled in our back seats).  And this, I put a mile or two of rope around everything in my truck bed.

We went inside her townhouse and finished off some coconut gelato--good stuff!  Then we prayed together, and off we went.  The only adjustment we had to make along the way was a brief stop to tie some rope around the top of the mattress and box spring because the wind was blowing through them and making them V outward.

Other than that, we had no problems. We made it down the mountains and through rush hour Atlanta traffic.  Actually, I had more clearance around my truck going through Atlanta than a hazardous waste vehicle.  For some reason, no one wanted to be near me. 

Next time she moves, I've already decided I'm renting a moving truck.

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