Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Let the stories begin!

Weird things happen to me when I travel. Things like moped accidents (In Rome- two accidents in one day!); throwing up on a church deacon (during a trip to Israel); or being pulled for special security screening and missing my flight home, while the remainder of my mission team returned on schedule (in Detroit, en route from Tanzania).

There's even a name for this phenomenon, "LeeAnn stories". Whenever I return home from a trip the first question asked is "What was the LeeAnn story"? And the sad thing is that usually there is a story to tell.

Today is no exception. Here's hoping that this will be the only story of the trip...

We left on time this morning for our family camping trip in Central Washington. Last night I loaded the car. J helped me and we packed our soft roof-top cargo bag with a 5 person tent, sleeping bag, Coleman propane lantern, Coleman coffee pot, and two chairs. After securing it to the roof racks, we were good to go.

So this morning, about 45 minutes into our trip, I was cruising along down 680 in Concord when I felt a lurch. I instantly glanced in the rearview mirror and saw a flash of black as something flew off the back of my SUV. Looking again in the rearview mirror I saw that the cargo pack was lying in one of the 4 lanes of the freeway.

I immediately pulled over to call 911 (hoping that CHP would run a traffic stop and retreive my gear), but I was still on hold when I was horrified to see a truck run over the pack. The pack exploded and camping gear scattered across the freeway.

In hindsight, I should probably add here that those cargo bags do have a weight limit. I should have paid attention to that. Speeding along at 75 with it on the roof is also a bad idea!

Anyway- back to the story. Not feeling too secure in sitting on the side of the freeway (and now knowing that my gear was totaled), I hung up the phone, pulled ahead, and got off at the next exit to mourn my beloved camping coffee pot, my favorite tent, and my really cool shade shelter (not to mention the other gear). I tried to call J at work (he was in a meeting, no cell phone) then called my mom who we were supposed to meet for camping. After discussing my loss and strategizing over what I could borrow from her, we got back on the road.

After another call to 911 to report the debris on the road (and confess as to who's fault it was) and after being reassured that no one was hurt and that Cal Trans would be cleaning up the mess, we got back on the road.

I was able to talk to J about 1/2 hour later, who said to just buy what I needed en route and deal with the rest later (wise words...)

So many stops later, we are now in Bend staying overnight... And thanks to Big 5 in Redding, I was able to replace some of my gear (at least the most important things- like a tent).

Tune in tomorrow for the rest of the story.


Llama Momma said...

Oh no!!!! Please don't say there's MORE to this story....ugh....

Anonymous said...

I love your stories! You need share about the Romanian security guard who spoke mandarin and pointed a gun at us in Romania and how NO ONE would believe us the next day.