After my brain surgery, I spent a lot of time getting my body up to par for traveling again. I noticed the last time out I quickly fatigued and had to have downtime frequently. Often that occurred while the boys completed their schoolwork. This time, I am wondering if I will be able to carve out time enough to keep up with my blog let alone rest. Silly me, little did I realize how much downtime I would have with this first day on the road, though not in the way I would have thought…
We headed out from Minnesota by midmorning after loading up the last minute items and saying our good-byes. I felt we were finally started making some good time down I-35. We past the Minnesota / Iowa border. I felt like texting Dad to celebrate the fact we made it to another state (you know how parents worry easily about where the kids are) but held off. Bladders were full, stomachs empty, and a rest stop sign beckoned to us, “Only two more miles!” Then, it happened.
A loud “BANG! Thud, thud-d-d-d-d-d-d.” Simultaneously, our 20,000 lbs. of vehicle weight missed the rhythm of road as we felt like something suddenly pushed back on us. Finally, our tire sensor sounded its alert beeps. We instantly knew we blew a tire on the trailer. For the next endless period of time, I helplessly watched as Joel changed the tire out to the spare. With our flare lit, most of the vehicles changed lanes as they passed us. Of course, there’s always “the one guy”. He was on the cell phone; and Joel watched nervously as his truck veered close to where he was working, since it was the driver’s side that blew out. Thank you to those who were praying for us, as the guy swerved away in time.
We did call 9-1-1 to notify a trooper to help with traffic management, and prevent the situation going from bad to potentially much worse. By the time Joel was screwing the lug nuts back into place, the trooper showed up. I was thankful for the flashing lights to help alert future motorists. However I did find it quite odd how he was accomplishing this. He tucked his squad car off the side of the highway behind us, but then physically stood halfway in the lane adjacent to where Joel was working. Yikes! Fortunately he wasn’t hit by a car either.
Once we got on our way again, we stopped off in Cedar Falls, IA, and purchased two tires for the trailer. One thing about blowing tires on travel trailers is that it is never a simple fix. That tire took out a side fender, a water line to the refrigerator, sewer cap, sheered off the grey water line and broke a support bracket. Hopefully, we have discovered it all.
So, that brings me back to my thoughts on downtime. Yup, I sure have a bit of it for now. I am able to write this out as I sit in a Menards parking lot. My men are fixing the issues, and I just witnessed the sun setting behind a cluster of dark rain clouds. The wind has picked up and the insane heat of the day is subsiding. Hopefully we will put on a few more miles tonight, if he is not tired out from the day’s adventure.
Until we meet again,