Indiana’s license plate used to say “Wander” above the plate number. I had a friend who attended college there during that time. She wanted to get a car and personalize her plate to read AMLESLY. I thought of this as we headed away from our house to start the next segment of our lives. We weren’t really wandering aimlessly, but it sure felt like it. We were heading to Texas by way of Iowa and Illinois.
The boat was not yet ours but the paperwork was in the works so we were confident and slightly giddy as we headed towards it in preparation. I was dreading sitting in a vehicle for days; arthritis in the hips and knees makes long trips rugged. I also didn’t relish all that time with the “damned dog”. He wasn’t a really great traveler either. Rick, sweet man that he is, tried to get a rental RV that would allow movement for Bert and me. The company didn’t have a one way for us so we rented a U-Haul instead. Anyone who has had the self move experience knows those trucks are slightly less than plush. We were just glad we had air conditioning in this one (we didn’t on the move TO Arizona nine years ago).
We were sitting three across an Bert got the window seat for fear he might cause an accident next to the driver. I got the “hump”. Story of my life. As a child, during all our family road trips, us three girls got the backseat. As the youngest, I always got the middle seat where the floorboard had a giant hump back in the day (regardless of make or model, it seemed). I got them all back one summer by throwing up over everything after eating an entire bag of Funyuns. Bwahahahahaha!!!!
The truck had no hump, but the engine compartment jutted into the cab at my legs. Strattling that, I settled in for the long haul while the pup curled up for a nap. Rick thought I was crazy for giving Bert the window seat and it didn’t take long (the first potty stop, I believe) to swap seats. My body couldn’t take it and the engine hump was not an issue for him.
As we traveled, Bert got restless. As he got restless, he became more clumsy and erratic. Totally understandable, but so exhausting. There was a gap between each of the seats. So as he would adjust his position, a leg would be lost to the crack and his head would land hard on a lap, a seat cushion, or occasionally against the engine compartment. He would just lay like that for awhile, even when I tried to coax him out. When he could no longer stand it, he’d jockey to get out (generally with my assistance) and readjust again. One day he slept on Rick’s lap the whole day. It was an uneventful day for me but Rick could barely move by the end. Cramps in his feet and legs set in and he had a miserable night.
Our marriage has been peppered with regular travel. We love to travel! When we had little money we drove, camping or staying in reasonable hotels along the way. We starting using a booking app that got us great deals but you never knew the hotel until you booked and paid for it. Still, we had pretty good luck.
This trip started out well. We found a great hotel that even Bert liked. He claimed the sitting chair as his own.
But there were others.
The hotel that added a bathtub liner to “update” it. Instead it allowed water between it and the actual tub making your shower a bizarre surfing experience. The two star hotel that needed a plaque with a veiled warning against taking their hideous bedspreads or cheap towels.
And then there was this.
Sigh. I left it alone.
While traveling we got the signed boat contract back from the seller with about half of it crossed out. He had a problem with having responsibility for the vessel while all the particulars were being completed. Apparently he felt once he signed the contract agreeing to the purchase it was up to us to insure and/or pay any damages that might arise prior to our actually owning it (can’t insure something you don’t own–oops). He also didn’t like the brokers’ ability to sue if we go behind their backs to skip paying them their fees. Once we arrived in Texas, we went to the seller’s broker to try to explain why we needed those parts signed, too. I, of course, spoke out and said, “I’m sure the contract he signed to buy the boat had the same info in it. He would be foolish not to have that.” The broker informed us that they didn’t do that in their paperwork. Its done differently in Texas. Yea–just like their rest stop bathrooms (see previous rants on Texas). In reality, the guy didn’t understand the contract either. So OUR broker had to explain page by page to THEIR broker so he could explain to the seller. Finally, it was signed and I could sleep at night. Whew! Now we wait. We wait for the survey and sea trial (like a home inspection) and those results. We wait for the title search. We wait for all the paperwork to be completed. We wait for the owners to clear out their stuff. Our broker said about a week more, but with this owner it could be years (ha, ha). In the meantime, we sit in a hotel room, the three of us. At least its been updated this century with fairly nice décor. Hmmmm…there’s no sign that says I can’t…(just kidding).