In the spring of 2006 my Mom was having issues with her thyroid and needed to go into the hospital for surgery. Between grad school classes and trying to run for the Kenner City Council I was strapped for cash. I felt really bad that I was not going to be able to afford a trip back to Baltimore.
Cassie suggested that we should just make a road trip. She dropped everything going on with her to make sure I could be with my Mom, just in case. That selflessness is one of the reasons I will always love her.
Of course, nothing we do can ever be easy, the trip being the first example of this. We decided that we would leave at night and take turns driving in order to try and make the 18 hour trip in one day. I took the first shift. By the time I got to Slidell (an hour away) my eyes were already trying to close. (For some reason I get tired very quickly driving east. It usually doesn’t happen driving west.)
Eventually I took over driving again. As we approached Chattanooga on I-24 the car all of a sudden went VROOOOOOOM. Pressing the gas pedal did not cause any forward acceleration. Fortunately that part of the interstate has a downward slope and we had enough forward momentum that I was able to get the car off the interstate and into a parking lot. The transmission was shot. Fortunately Cassie has been in Saturns for a long time and so getting her transmission replaced in the home of Saturns was likely easier than any other place in the country. Cassie also had 50 miles left before her warranty ran out. This added about 4 hours to our already long trip.
We had the shuttle at the dealership drive us to the mall and we hung out there for a few hours. We went into a Dillards where an older saleswoman approached me and said “the big and tall section is over there.” I looked at Cassie and said “she must have thought I was tall.” We laughed.
I finally got to see my Mom in the hospital after surgery was over. When she saw Cassie approaching, her first words were “she’s so pretty”. Which is true, she was and is very pretty. Mom survived and has defeated several other illnesses since then as well.
On the ride back home, I drove all the way to Georgia without switching drivers. Basically I wasn’t able to handle an hour driving east but I could handle 13 hours driving west without an issue. I am strange. But I couldn’t have done it without her and will always be thankful for that and many other wonderful things that I will tell you about over the next 29 days.