Saturday, June 28, 2014

On not being lost in Iowa

While there were some humorous moments, I am happy to report that I am not writing this from the back roads of Iowa still looking for a driveway. All went well and I am now home with two less children than I left with, but that was the plan so it's OK.

The drive was fine and then we turned off the interstate to head north. That was fine until there was a detour. Now, historically, I do not have great success with detours. I don't know if I miss signs or just have happened to be on poorly marked ones, but they never seem to end and I have to make up the last bit on my own. I do not view detours signs as happy things. Yet, the bridge was out, so I had no choice but to take the detour. I drive on and then the detour brings us to the town where I have been to pick-up our side of beef. I know where I am! The trouble is, while I can easily find the meat locker in this small town, I have always had difficulty finding the road north out of it. Ask my children. I probably hold the record for the number of times I have circled around this town looking for the highway. I got to add to that number again on Thursday. (Don't ask me how or why I get lost in this town, but I do. It's a mystery.) So, I decide to continue following the detour, which most definitely is not heading north, the direction I need to go. We drive some more and I notice the road coming up is the one that goes by the farm where my brother is now living. (I am not heading to the farm first, I am heading to the friends' house where some of us will be sleeping. But I have never been to their house, hence the road between the cornfield directions.) We pass the farm and keep driving north. Now I am finally on the right road and can begin looking for the cornfields and the road... from the opposite direction from which I have directions. As we keep driving and notice we are passing things that were to be landmarks going the other way, we turn around, paying very close attention. And then we see the road... as we pass it. So I turn around again... and pass it. (It's not very big.) We do this little merry-go-round-thing three times before finally making the turn onto the small lane right in the middle of two corn fields. Truly there are no other identifying landmarks one could use to give directions. We find the house, greet our friends, and then climb back in the van to go back the way we came to go back to the farm.

The evening, after spending some time catching up with my brother and his family, TM and D. and I climb back into the van to go to the other house. A. decided she would rather sleep on the floor with her cousins. For some reason, the absence of A. in the car filled the boys with great trepidation. It was as if without A.'s presence we would become hopelessly lost and never be found again. "Are you sure you can find the road, Mommy?" "What if you don't find the road?" etc., etc. I will admit to sounding a little more confident than I was feeling. Would I be able to find the road in the dark? 

I am happy to report that I did, and found it the first time to boot. The next morning we headed back to the farm and helped do some unpacking then headed back for home. The 45 minutes spent in rain so heavy I could barely see the road wasn't a lot of fun, but that was the worst of it. It's funny how much more quiet the house seems with two children gone, even if those two children were the quietest of the bunch. It will be good to go back next week and see them (and bring one back.)

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