Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Away we go in our covered wagon...

This is how we got to denver. This is taken from Here with "some" editing by me, and some picture editing as well. I'm sick today, or else i probably would've taken the time and energy to re-write this and put myself in there a bit more, but to save you the suspense, when the car started to go side to side, i went right the hell to sleep. Enjoy!

You know we were headed over the river and through the woods to Grandmothers house we go!!! It was to be the surprise of the century to "Surprise Granddad on his 80th birthday." We feel an explanation is needed before we start this legacy adventure. It seemed so simple. We know we can drive to denver in 26 hours and then up to Casper from there. OR we were planning to take the Lewis and Clark Expedition through Nebraska on 1-80 up through Cheyenne and into Casper in time for LUNCH with Granddad on Thursday. Whichever, we were driving cross country in the winter...

NOW Heres what really happened..........
1. We thought Tim's new 16 inch wheels and tires would be the best choice for us to put on before we left. WOW brand new tires, oil change and new windshield wipers and collective driving experience of over 67 years we are set to go. Little did we know that S.C. rain tires are not suited for CO. blizzard conditions!

2. In order to finance this trip we have been fasting from "fastfood" since August 23. Every time we wanted to eat out instead of doing it we would take the money and put it in the piggly bank called " Shannon Bucks" (money to go see Shannon on.) This plays a vital role in the health of us later on.

The Group drives the first night in record time to Nashville. Wake up to very cold temperatures and a need to buy socks (Ours are deeply packed and the flip flops just arent cutting it). This was our first dilemma of restrictive clothing. Next day.......Drive like mad (enjoying a joy ride AROUND as in a Circle around Nashville to see the Dollar General Store headquarters. --Lisa Missed the turn not once but twice) to Kansas City. Hoping to get to our rendevous point of Grand Island Nebraska by midnight, we check in with check point Charlie and receive a covert phone call from RogerRedDog Denver saying that he is looking at a radar screen image of the "STORM OF 2006". After a full 3 second deliberation we decide to "FOCUS to the North from KS City and try to make it to Lincoln Nebraska for Supper and Grand Island for a late night snack before Super 8 slumber.

Checkpoint Lincoln: We get fuel, and after hearing a rumor of ice storms and laughing at the pile of sandbags for sale, we head on, anxious to make our goal of North Platte.

HERE folks, is where things fall apart or as they say in the ROAD AND TRAVEL REPORT "Conditions worsen."
Solid BLACK Ice behind a semi turns to ice patches that turn to snow pack no dry lane, not even a dry patch the width of a finger. Ice Crystals forming on the street lights and the trees look like blown glass statues. I guess they had an "ice storm" here.

Tim has passed every drivers test he EVER took with 100 % and he also knows left from right and front from rear as well as top from bottom, when following an England Semi at 35mph in the middle of Nebraska at 11:00 on a Wednesday night. We drove for 45 minutes like this and voted to spend the night in a cozy Kearney crib in order to rejuvinate for the next day.

Birthday Thursday and nothing will get us down. We are up and on the road to Casper at 8:15 in some time zone. We were driving precariously on to the next town where we were stopped by the golden gates covering the road and forcing us to share snow- love stories with fellow travelers of Flying J in North Platte.

It was 9:25. We heard rumors (again) that the plows were running and we would be heading out at 10:00. Special Ops Cat Blue called to say our position may have been compromised. We needed to call home base. We called disguising our voices as Mount Pleasant Revelers in the throws of a full blown Oyster Jamboree. We also called Henny Penny in Sheridan to confirm the reports of the sky falling in Denver and surrounding areas. (Nebraska)

We sat and sat and ate (Jerky, Licorice, cookies,pepsi, gum, donuts, coffee, sugar daddy, twinkies, more coffee) outside of a stop and go. Our bodies are now reacting to the transfats and sugar that they have not seen since August. We were acting like pixy stick eating 5 year olds on Christmas Eve with no where to run off the energy.

WOO HOO 11:30 they open the gates. We are out of there. On our way west, 3/4 miles to the next exit because the road is still closed. Off the interstate again we go all hopes dashed. And since we are so hungry we arent sure what this day might hold so we decided to eat while we have the chance, besides its lunch time somewhere.

We drag ourselves into the Village Inn where we are promptly seated but told the help cannot get to work today due to the terrible ice storms last night so our service might be a bit delayed. NO problem for us, we are waiting. Our food is here in record time, we eat in record time because we arent sure when the big gate is going to swing and we want to be first in line. So back out to the comfort of our lavish fully modified Ford Focus --Hummer Edition. Its now 12:22 and we are starting to try to convince each other of optional plans. (They did this in the Donner party too) .

We democratically convinced Tim that the best plan would be to "just keep swimming" even if it meant going more north. On the map, Thedford is only 21 miles away another 21 miles north of the storm that was hitting Denver. After a quick shopping stop of Walmart for some much needed chapstick we headed north. As we drove past the World War 2 Veterans Memorial Park I called into Red Dog to let him know our plan and to make sure he had the Navy and NORAD on standby. Conversation was cut short due to limited --as in NO! NONE! NADA-- cell phone service and AWAY we went.
As we headed north the first 15 miles included black ice, snowpack track, blowing and drifting snow and Walmart Semi's filled with Tickle me Elmos passing us at a standing rate. Did I forget to mention the horse? This is when Tim realized he may have been horn swaggled into the most dangerous mission of his life. to be continued in part II...



Excellent blog and thanks for the opportunity to share my thoughts here. I am putting together a collection of photos and information on Hummer and so far I managed to cover some of the models, and you will find some cool Hummer H1 photos, Hummer H2 pictures and high resolution Hummer H3 photos. I hope you’ll find the website to be interesting, in case you want to pay it a visit and also check out the spy photo for the new Hummer H4.

Enjoy your day!

Michael R.

12:38 AM  

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