Friday, September 24, 2010
Did anyone ever read the tales of "Bomba the Jungle Boy" in your childhood? I remember reading them and snorting to myself that the battles he fought were a bit overdone and packed together, one on top of another, in an unrealistic fashion. For example: he would no sooner have battled the voracious crocodile in the river and fallen exhausted onto the river bank than a monstrous python would drop from an overhanging tree and attempt to crush the remaining life from him. Of course, he killed the python. Rest at last...but no! Here comes the hungry black panther, springing from the tangled jungle undergrowth! Another blood-curdling, heart-pounding fight for survival! No sooner does the vanquished panther lie still than a hunting party from the tribe of Bomba's enemies "just happens" to show up...armed and itching for battle! You get the picture.
I've been feeling like Bomba lately...dazed and exhausted...but unable to quit. My sister and I discovered on August 13th that we would likely be moving to the Corpus Christ, TX area for a job she badly needed. We had turned down, 4 days previous, a job in New Orleans, partly because we couldn't find an affordable place to live and couldn't see how we could possibly pack up our home, put it on the precarious K. C. market, and move in 3 weeks time. (I didn't really want to go back to Louisiana right now anyway, having so recently escaped!) Then came the offer in TX. We looked at each other in disbelief, went to the Lord in prayer, and started packing. One piece of the puzzle after another fell into place. We threw stuff away, gave stuff away, had a monstrous garage sale...Friends helped pack and sell and clean. We have a pending contract on the house. A friend who used to own a moving company supervised loading our Penske moving truck...his loading was a work of art! Where we thought we'd need 2 22' trucks, James got it all on one 22' truck and a 6' x 12' trailer that I pulled behind my F150 pick-up truck! We slept on air mattresses on the floor overnight and left the house about 5:30 a.m the morning after the day of loading the truck and trailer. 6 blocks from the house, the 1st set of warning lights came on on the dash of the Penske. We sat at the intersection for 15 minutes while the Penske trouble shooting line put Lisa through all sorts of "try this/try that" drills w/the truck and pronounced her good to "drive on." We made it 80 miles before the next set of lights came on...same drill...same instructions. This time, we got as far as a turnpike "rest stop" outside Wichita, KS. The truck wouldn't start back up again. Penske sent a tow truck. The driver got the truck started and limped us across town to the Penske warehouse and shop where our truck was officially pronounced "dead." No replacement truck was available nearer than Oklahoma City....soooooooo...the tow truck towed us to Oklahoma City to a huge Penske warehouse in an isolated industrial park on the outskirts of town. A crew was waiting to offload all our beautifully loaded stuff onto a 26' truck. They couldn't make it all fit, didn't want to take responsibility for the shoddy work they were doing in trying, and walked off the job, leaving us and all our earthly belongings in the middle of an abandoned warehouse parking lot under the stars. By this time, it was approximately 9:00p.m. Fortuneately, it wasn't raining. We placed our now dirty and damaged mattresses and box springs into the back of the truck and laid down to wait...for what, we weren't sure. The Penske customer service line, assured us they were searching for another loading crew. This crew showed up and proceeded to cram our stuff willy nilly into the truck..".just get it in," never mind whether crates of books are sitting on top of boxes of china and crystal, or there are rips in the sofa or gouges in the antique bed frame...we had to throw away another box...(I hope it wasn't crucial to our existence)...and tie several more items in the back of my pick-up bed. By this time, it was 2:00a.m., and we were too exhausted to argue. We found a motel. Lisa slept. I wasn't able to. We hit the road again around 8:00 a.m., headed for my niece's home in Austin, TX. She had been with us, driving my sister's car, but since she had to be back at work the following day, we rearranged luggage, put Romeo, the German Shepherd, in with her, and sent them on ahead, since we didn't figure there was a need for all of us to go through whatever we were going to have to go through! Just about Waco, TX, I started experiencing "black out" spells...called Lisa on the Blue Tooth..."not safe to keep driving," I said..."pull over." We phoned my niece. She and her boy friend drove over, Eddie drove my pick-up, and I snuggled down in the front seat of Jenn's car while she drove. We got to Austin where I immediately crashed and slept until around 6:00 the next morning. We had to be in Corpus Christi, by 2:00 for my sister's orientation at the hospital where she was to be working....couldn't find the keys for the Penske Truck! An hour and a half later, we found them where they had fallen out of Lisa's purse into the grass along side the driveway at Jenn's place...had to reschedule Lisa's orientation for the next day...I'll continue this in part 2 of this blog...stay tuned!