“Big Brown Betty to Raptor One.” Silence.
“Big Brown Betty to Raptor One.” No answer.
I didn’t really expect a response. After traveling 65 days, 4,500 RV miles and countless car miles together, Greg and I sadly bid farewell to my sister, Sharon, and brother-in-law, Mike. Clicking the radio once more for nostalgia’s sake, I stowed it away and smiled. It’s been a wonderful, fun-filled journey and an absolute joy traveling with them.
Our cross country trips are not over yet. Mike and Sharon’s route now leads home, 2,000-plus miles to the northwest. Ours ushers us southwest about 1,500 miles. As planned, Raptor One rolled out from Memphis yesterday, three days prior to Betty’s scheduled departure. We said our goodbyes the night before. Thankfully, I didn’t hear their diesel truck start up for a final goodbye the next morning. The flood of tears at the sight of them driving away would’ve put the Tennessee thunderstorms to shame.
The Mississippi River flows peacefully past our campsite and the vacant one next to us. I’ll have plenty of time to relay travel stories from this expedition in the months to come. For now, reflections of our times together, from the hilarious to touching, crowd my mind.
Greg and Mike displayed enormous patience when Sharon and I, armed with maps, gave conflicting directions. And, when we engaged our Rand-McNally GPS divas, Natalie and Rosie, along with Siri, they tuned out the choir and simply asked, “Which way do we go?”
Introducing ourselves as Wallace & Wagstaff when checking in to RV Parks brought a common response: “Sounds like a law firm.”
We mastered the subway systems in Washington D.C. and Boston, MA after some practice and discussion.
“Green line to yellow to blue.”
“No, green to red to blue.”
“Blue line’s down, pick another color.”
We often reminded ourselves, “this is a once in a lifetime trip”. Thank you Sharon and Mike for enriching our travels! This has, indeed, been the trip of a lifetime. Godspeed.