Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Drive

April 3: cool and bright. Car loaded, snacks on board, maps and GPS handy and ready.

You can see that Ontario is still bare as we drove the 401 towards Windsor/Detroit for our border crossing. It took about 2 hours to get to the bridge and with our passports in hand, passing through customs and immigration was quick and easy. The highway we travelled in Michigan was awful, bumpy and broken up, so we were very glad to cross into Ohio within the hour. After stopping to pick up new maps at the Ohio Tourist area it was time for a photo op. with little fang. She loves to travel.
We crossed into Kentucky, 7ish pm. Rain had started and cut short my attempt to get a photo at the entry to each new state. We stopped for supper in Florence, in the area I had thought we would spend the night, then push on a little further towards Louisville. The rain got heavier, we got lost trying to find a hotel, totally confused the GPS and finally found a Ramada Inn and checked in. A good ten hours since we had left home ... not bad considering meal breaks, coffee stops, information stops.

April 4: Not much sleep last night thanks to the sound of traffic all night long. Even making ear plugs out of kleenex didn't help. Breakfast was good, plentiful and included in the cost of the room.

Behind these greening trees there are 3 different busy roads we hadn't notice when we checked in.

The skies remained grey when we passed Louisville Kentucky. The bypass worked well, keeping us out of the downtown. We had toured the city 1999 so didn't feel the need to stop again. Hollering "window going down" kept Paul happy whenever I wanted to take a photo.
We continued to run into rain showers through Tennessee and into Alabama. We were now driving through green and you could smell the change in the air ... pine, damp, heavier is the only way I can describe it. Not unpleasant, just different.
We checked into our hotel in Pelham, just north of Birmingham at 3:25, having gained an hour in the time change in Tennessee.

The skies remained dark and we were told that we would be notified by the front desk if we had to take shelter. Pardon? We had arrived in the middle of a tornado watch.

We rushed everything into our room before the rain got serious and when the warning sirens started and the world went almost black, I had a moment of pure panic. What do I save? What goes with me to the shelter? I really wasn't prepared to leave anything behind.

The storm passed north of us. I was surprised at how quickly everything settled back to normal. Now my concern was for the wedding ... outdoors tomorrow evening but when we met up with my sister, who was staying in the room next door with her other daughter and family, they seemed confident all would be well.

We attended dinner at the home of the groom's sister ... pulled pork, beans, salads, yummy pies and lots of wine and beer, met the family and members of the wedding party. I had a great time.

1558 kms recorded on the GPS


Tracey said...

Glad you are back safe and sound! That's a long drive!

Libby said...

Looking forward to the next exciting installment, now for the wedding!
Glad that the storm passed you by, I think that we were having a rather unusual mini hurricane in Melbourne at about the same time.
Little Fang is probably one of the most travelled girls in the world.