Ever get the feeling you are going the wrong way? Irma regained strength this morning during our drive and will hit the U.S. as a category 5 storm.
The radio was our entertainment except when we hit the dead spot in South Carolina. The DJ's were trying to give accurate forecasts on the crazy storm in the Caribbean. It was coming this way, but no one knew how or where she would turn. Florida was a definite but where would she head next.
In Savanna, the announcer literally said. “Be ready. She could go left, or she could go right.”
When we made it to the Florida line, the difference in traffic was evident. Everyone was headed north. It was bumper to bumper, and we knew what we would be facing that tomorrow. It was almost like they had closed Florida.
With the light traffic, we made excellent time and arrived at Mom and Dad’s in time for dinner. After dinner, it was nap time and the exhaustion of the day took over. We didn’t want to get up, but we needed to pack. This is why we were here, and now we needed to decide what was going.
We are leaving early.
How early is too early when you are racing against time?
We awoke to hear that Barbuda was wiped out. I was still waiting for my love to tell me that we shouldn’t go. I've been known to make rash decisions when it comes to crazy ideas. It was four in the morning, and we took care of the dogs before heading out the door. He had already mapped our route, and we were on our way. Coffee, gas and some Mcmuffins were the next stop.
The conversation was good over the roar of the van. A cargo van is not built for comfort, and there is no insulation. I wrapped up in my throw and tried to chat. We hadn’t seen each other in a couple of weeks, and we had lots to talk about. The importance of the pieces we were picking up was one topic.
The wardrobe of my childhood was a gift from a neighbor on Skipwith road in Richmond Virginia. I don’t have a memory without it. Mr. Ford gave it to my Mom and Dad because he loved us. It was appraised as an antique then, and he wanted it to have a good home. He was my Grandfather figure even though we were not related. When we were not allowed to have pets, he adopted a spaniel named Queenie, my first dog. She just lived next door, but I saw her every day. Every time we moved, Mom would lovingly and carefully take it apart and wrap it in linens so the mirrors on the front doors would not break. It held our art projects and the 8mm film reels of my past with the projector to view them. In the bottom drawer, we stored our winter gloves, scarves and hats, although it was so wide, we couldn’t open it without Mom’s help. I can picture us jumping up and down waiting for Mom to get our gloves so we could play in the snow.
My grandmother’s cedar chest from the 1940’s. It was always placed at the end of her bed. I never knew what it contained until we opened at after her funeral. There were memories of her childhood, pictures of the past during World War II, newspapers from that time of high school classmates who had fallen during the war, my father’s baby keepsakes and a few surprises. I will talk about in a later post.
The last item we were driving to retrieve was an elegantly framed picture of dogwood blooms. It was given to my parents by a church member. In every one of our Christmas pictures, it was on the wall behind us. My Mom told me that it was from one of the local Virginia plantation homes. It is a simple still life print, but I love it all the same and can’t imagine my parent’s wall without it.
He patiently listened partially to just stay awake, but I know that he loves me because he kept driving for three things. Just three things.
Irma is still coming, and the Governor of Florida has now announced the mandatory evacuation of the Florida Keys.
What should it cost to save history? Can you put a limit on the cost?
Tuesday was prep day. I packed only the essentials because we were going to be traveling in a truck. We decided that we were just going for a few things. The list was short but it was important things to my family history. That didn't leave much room for extras. Food and water so we would have minimal stops. Pillows and a blanket. Then the text came in.
“Can we pick the truck up early?”
“I don’t know, but we can try.”
On his lunch break, we shot over to Enterprise of Morehead City. The lot was empty.
“I guess that answers that,” I mumbled. This week had not gone as planned and now I was getting grumpy.
“Let’s see what they say. I can at least fill out paperwork and be ready to pick up when they call.” He pulled in and parked.
Jogging inside, (he never does anything in slow motion) he flashed his dazzling smile and talked to the lady at the desk. He popped out and handed me his keys.
“We are going to get a cargo van. It will protect the antiques better in the weather if we hit any. Plus it's cheaper.”
He started adding up the trip cost. So far 6 days of work, adding both of our work-weeks and $230 for the van. But can you put a limit on what we should spend? Should we?
So we had a van to head South, and it was time to finish packing. We were headed out early.
All photos on the website are taken by Tammera Cooper and remain her property.