I made it to Kentucky with the Mav! The drive to Mat’s in Cary, IL was wonderful. Took me two days with a great visit with friends in Lincoln, NE in between. Man do I love a road trip. I’d be six hours in and realize I only had about two more hours to go and be bummed. I was having a blast, cruising along listening to my tunes, passing the farrow fields dotted with rolls of hay, the autumn landscape a melding of rusts, browns and yellows. I had been missing those quintasentially midwest views.
My brother Mat was waiting in his driveway and had pulled my car out of the garage where he’d been storing it for me. I anticipated seeing the Mav for the first time in real life I guess how you’d feel meeting your on-line date for the first time. (Never been on those sites. Mike and I met the old fashioned way…in a bar.) I had seen pictures, a little video, and chosen her out of many. I looked at her picture every day and showed her to friends, falling for her a little bit more every time I did. But would she really be ‘all that’ when I first laid eyes on her?
Yes, she was all that and more…she was perfect. Truly, she was too cute. Just as small as I had wanted, body in good shape, all the insignia and trim there….a solid, good looking car. This is the first time I’ve had the desire to name a car or call her a ‘she’. I’ve never really understood that before now. My first thought was Madge, but Mat said that sounded too much like vag, which would definitely be appropriate. I’m still thinking about it. My sister Kristen liked Midge which isn’t bad. We shall see. Suggestions accepted.
I haven’t driven a stick shift since my 20’s. The Mav is a 3 speed with the shifter on the steering column which I definitely hadn’t driven before. We took her around the block a couple times and I got the hang of it pretty quick. Put her in third rather than first and stalled here and there, but didn’t do too bad overall. Mat helped me get a trailer rented and the Mav up on it. Being relatively new to the manual shifting thing, I didn’t want to drive the damn thing up and through the cab of Mike’s truck. I took a couple turns around the block with my ‘operation’, as Pop would call it, to ensure all was well and ready to roll in the morning. (For my less electronically experienced readers, below is a video. If you are reading this from your email, you’ll have to click on it and it will bring you to the blog site where you can see it. You know who you are.)
Got it down to Kentucky with no major catastrophes. I did pull into a Steak ‘n Shake and run the trailer over a curb which made a horrible, loud scraping noise. A group of teens sitting out front turned and stared so I just circled the parking lot all nonchalant, pulled back out and continued onto Cracker Barrel. (Not a lot of options in central Illinois, but my salad was surprisingly good.) I could run at about 65 mph without issue and constantly checked the rearview and side mirrors to ensure the car hadn’t somehow fallen off the trailer and rolled into a ditch.
Stopped in Bloomington-Normal, IL to spend the night with Kristen, my brother-in-law Doug and niece Bailey. Here’s a still shot of the operation out front of their house. It’s long, but no longer than the camper Mike and I pull. I’m comfortable driving that but prefer not to back up.
I took some smaller back roads the final leg down to the P’s. Passed through Anytown, USA over and over again, each with their own McD’s and Dollar Store, but still with that small town character that I love. Made it to Eddyville, KY in time for dinner, again, with no major issues. I did though knock some of the rocks lining the driveway into the drainage ditch coming in which Pop immediately directed me to fix before my feet even hit the ground. “Hey, put my rocks back!” Not there five minutes and he’s got me hauling rocks out of a ditch. Perhaps a bit of foreshadowing? Regardless, I was there, I had made it, and I was psyched to get started.