I have told this story about a 1.000 times already and for me it never gets old.
Here is what really happened Thanksgiving 2008.
I was working late that Wednesday evening before Thanksgiving. Ms. Rach (who just recently moved 1 1/2 hours away) and I agreed to meet at her house (where I have never been before), this was somewhere in the wilderness of VA. Back then I didn’t own a GPS yet and was doomed to rely on a print out of googlemaps. Rush-hour traffic and no clue where I was going were the reasons why I made it to Ms. Rach’s house an hour late. However I got there, that was the good part.
We then changed from my big red 2006 model toyota van (fully functioning) into her 1986 model, not so fully functioning dark blue, much loved Ranger (at least I think that’s what it was). She loved that car so much, she just couldn’t let go of it. When one thing broke, she’d fix it but sometimes all the fixing in the world can’t make an old car new. So when her headlights broke, she had to put in a new fuse, by doing that somehow the clock went out, ergo: headlights work – no clock and vice versa. You can see, it was definitely no Knight Rider Kitt.
Only riding in Ms. Rach’s car every once in a while, I didn’t know about any of these perks this vehicle came with. All I knew for that night, was that it’s a 4 hour-drive to Ms. Rach’s hometown and that there will be Thanksgiving dinner the next day.
Ms. Rach and I had much to talk about, in fact the only thing that made us stop talking was a cop car pulling us over. When Ms. Rach pulled down the window, she looked at the officer wide-eyed and asked him, why he pulled us over. He then gave her a little nod and told her that the headlights were out and that this indeed was very dangerous in the dark. Ms. Rach, being as charming as ever, talked us out of a ticket, before that though she had to prove her ability to put in a fuse and make the lights work again before the officer’s eyes. He then let us go and told us to be careful.
It didn’t take long before the fuse burnt out again and yet again, we were on the road without any lights. This time Ms. Rach realized it as soon as it happened and she turned on the emergency lights. When we got pulled over again, we went through the same procedure. As the officer approached, Ms. Rach and I were imitating the whole conversation, I’d go something like this:
Ms. Rach: What’s the matter officer?
Officer: You’re lights are out.
Ms. Rach: No shit, Sherlock.
It made us crack up so bad, it didn’t even matter what the officer was about to tell us. He came around to her side of the vehicle and knocked on the window, Ms. Rach rolled down the window and smiled at him. I listened to Ms. Rach talk to the officer when I noticed a little flashlight on my side of the vehicle. I turned around and another officer scared the bejesus out of me. Who knew that campus-officers came in doubles? – I didn’t. He gave us a little lecture on how not-save it was to drive without lights in the dark and that we shouldn’t do that – no shit, Sherlock. But by then it was only another 30 minutes to Ms. Rach’s home.
Somehow we made it to her childhood home, somehow we survived. The next few days included a lot of food, an introduction to dairy queen and Walmart, Ms. Rach showing off all her most favorite places and introducing me to all her most favorite people. It was a lot of fun, a lot of laughter and every time, I think about it, it warms my heart and it always makes me laugh.
There is one song that always reminds me of the time we have spent together and it always reminds me of this among many nights, but those I will talk about some other time…
Here’s the song – Nickelback’s “Gotta be somebody”: