Sunday, July 10, 2011

Hello Louisiana!

This post is long overdue!

After settling thing at home and my things some how packed into two carry-on sized bags, I departed Harney County on Thursday, June 23rd and headed for Ontario on the bus to meet up with my cousin Heather. I hope I never have to sit at that bus station again. It is creepy and out of the way. I much prefer the Burns Station (which happens to be Figaro's). At least it wasn't January this time. I spent a rather quiet night with her, her husband Nayt, and their two children (Drew, 2, and Alynn, 1 month).

Friday morning found me on my way to the Boise Airport for one of the last times. I said goodbye to Heather and checked into my flight. With plenty of time to spare, I grabbed some lunch, checked in with my friends on the East Coast, and settled into my gate to wait. While waiting, they called for anyone wishing to check bags since it was a full flight. One thing I have learned in my travels, checking bags post security = free checked luggage. I took advantage of it and lightened my load so I only had my backpack to lug around. At 1 PM I boarded my flight for Phoenix, Arizona and settled in with my knitting and music.

Phoenix was 108 degrees when we landed! Also, we landed 15 minutes before my next flight was set to board. And we were 20 gates away. Great. Luckily I was the last zone that was supposed to be called, so I booked it off the plane (getting hit by the heat on the jet bridge and air con in the boarding area) and down to the other end of the terminal. I learned as I arrived that my plane had a 15 minute delay and they hadn't even started boarding yet. Again, I had enough time for food! Luckily there was a hole in the wall sandwich place across the hall. Sandwich in one hand, project bag with knitting and DS in the other, I was good to go.

I arrived in Charlotte, North Carolina where Katie and her sister, Mary, were waiting to pick me up. I was so glad that flight was over! First major leg of travel done. Next week we would embark on another, this time heading into the deep south.

We spent the week lounging, packing, and lounging some more. We (well, Katie, since I was still packed) packed a little each night. On the 29th of June we packed up the car for an early start the next morning. And I mean early. We left little Rutherfordton, North Carolina at just past 4 AM. It means we missed all the early morning traffic, but we hit morning rush hour in Atlanta, Georgia.

The trip had been smooth the entire way until Atlanta. A fully loaded car going only about 10 miles/hour in 98 degree weather on asphalt is not a happy car. We had been in rush hour for about 40 minutes when we heard bubbling coming from the engine. Katie thought fast and pulled off to the side of the interstate and called home. The car, we figured out, had over heated. We needed to put some more water in it, but we didn't have any. So we cranked open the windows, turned the heater on high to siphon off the excess heat, and crawled through Atlanta traffic until we could make it to the next service station. We almost died from the heat, but the poor car made it. The guy at the station ended up putting over a gallon and a half of water in the car. Suffice to say, before we got back on the interstate, we bought a gallon of water just in case.

Since it was finally later in the morning (around 9:30), we called Tori to see where she was. The lazy bum was up but hadn't left yet! Granted her trip was supposed to be 3 hours shorter, but we were already that far into ours! She said she was getting ready to leave though and would keep us updated. The rest of Georgia and all of Alabama was boring. Alabama was just as boring as the last time we were in it, driving to Louisiana.

It was somewhere in Alabama that we learned that Tori got lost in Arkansas. She was trying to use a map and not her GPS and missed her exit. She had to back track 20 miles. We hit Mississippi at roughly the same time.

Okay, so we're finally in the same state again. Good, right? Not really. From where we were in Alabama (some where near Montgomery, I think) to our hotel in Covington, Louisiana is about 5 hours. The top of Mississippi where Tori was to Covington is about 5.5 hours. Not too bad. But then it seemed like the State of Mississippi decided to work on Interstate 55. That put Tori another 2-3 hours behind. So there is now a 3-4.5 hour difference in our arrival times, with Katie and I arriving first. And the hotel is in Tori's name.

Katie and I decided to stop in Biloxi, Mississippi, play on the beach, and get something to eat. That put us still 1.5 hours out from Covington. I think we wasted all of 45 minutes eating and walking along the water. We decided screw it. Katie and I drove into Covington and went to the hotel. The person checking people in was very nice and let us check in ahead of Tori. Thank goodness! The poor rats and Jackie Pho were getting toasty in the car. The time we still had before Tori arrived, Katie and I checked out an apartment (which latter turned into the one we now reside in).

It took us the better part of a day and a half to finally decide on an apartment. Several we liked online we didn't like in person or the owner never got back to us. The one we finally decided on is small with only 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, and a tiny kitchen (I mean tiny), but it works for now.

Okay! Shopping time so more on the house later!

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