Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee
kevin_standlee

Marathon Drive Home

I am home, and none too soon. I find spending two weeks on the trot living out of the RV a bit wearing.

Yesterday morning about 9 AM, Lisa left Fernley in the Astro. Shortly after 2 PM, I met her at my office in Fremont. Having already logged 50 hours this week as of the end of the day on Thursday, I could have left at any time I wanted, so I packed up and left the office. We took the minivan over to my mechanic in Fremont, who now has two weeks to do the front-end alignment and several other things that he's not had time to do because I've had him under time pressure and because he has a pretty significant backlog of work. (He's good and word of mouth gets him enough work to keep him very busy.)

We discussed how I'd get the minivan back when I come back to the Bay Area in two weeks. He agreed that we could come collect it from his lot on Sunday (he'll leave it where I can get to it; he's not open then) and I can come over later that week and pay for it and collect my spare keys. Lisa and I will drive down as early as we can manage from Fernley and she will drive the Astro home that same day.

By the time we dealt with the van, it was about 3 PM, which is much later than I like to leave the Bay Area, particularly on a Friday. I offered to have us spend the night in a hotel in Fremont and then drive home Saturday, but Lisa said she was up to us driving home that day. So we set out into the teeth of Friday afternoon commute traffic in the Rolling Stone.

Fremont to Lodi Junction via Niles Canyon, I-680/I-580/Altamont Pass/I-5 is less than 80 miles. It took us 2 1/2 hours to get there, an average speed of only 32 miles/hour, and it felt slower. We refueled the RV, had dinner at the Denny's at the Flying J truck stop, and Lisa took the wheel, driving over to Lodi on CA-12, then up CA-99 to Sacramento. By the time we got there, the worst of Sacramento's commute had subsided, so we didn't have to proceed at a crawl over the Capital City Freeway.

I directed Lisa to the facility where my sister is staying, and we spent maybe half an hour with her. She's really looking and sounding so much better. But they still don't know if they can get her to a situation where she can go home. The supporting equipment that keeps her breathing consistently is apparently difficult to get approval for home use.

The next driving leg was short: I drove us to Colfax, where we got smoothies and Lisa took the wheel again. Colfax is one of the "1/3 markers" (Lodi Junction is the other) of my Fernley-Bay Area drives, and it's about 100 miles home from there. I offered to drive the rest of the way home when we got to Donner Summit, but Lisa said she was good to go and drove us all the way home. So she actually drove most of the 600-mile round trip herself, with me only driving about 120 miles of it.

Today our ambitions were small and involved sleeping a lot. But eventually we did get out and get the RV's tanks dumped, after which we went to the Black Bear Diner for a very late (3 PM) breakfast. The local casinos in Fernley sent us a $10 each free play offer, so after lunch we sat down at Lisa's currently favorite slot machine. After running through the $20, the meter still had $32.20 on it, so Lisa cashed out, kept $20, and gave me the rest, as is her normal practice with slot play. We then went and got some groceries for the next few days and went home. Tomorrow we don't plan on going anywhere, and that's just fine with me.
Tags: astro, casino, lisa, rolling stone
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