Tuesday, April 18, 2006

The Accident That Wasn't

The average time to drive from Nashville, Tennessee to home is 11 hours. Last night it took us 16. It all started when I "forgot" to set the alarm for 5am. "But wasn't the extra two hours of sleep lovely?" Since we'd driven straight through on our way up, we made a pact to stop at at least one side attraction along the way back. Unable to find signs for such gems like "The World's Largest Ball Of String" or "An Eight Ton Frying Pan" we settled on Savage Gulf State Park.

We didn't realize it was an hour out of our way.

But it was worth it. After a two mile hike we came across the most beautiful little waterfall. My first waterfall. Hoop and I crawled across rocks, fallen trees and rope bridges to reach the best views. I stood on an oasis of rock over a pool of clear water and thought, "THIS is the definition of peace." Then we had to walk back. By the time we reached the car I was cussing cigarettes, my short legs, and the Twinkie I'd eaten ten minutes before we'd arrived.

Four hours after our detour we were back on the road, still in Tennessee and only two hours from Hoop's family's house. So we cut out most pit-stops and kept the car on cruise control exactly 10 miles over the speed limit. We were only an hour away from home when the bottom of our plans fell out. Did I mention? Hoop's Mom had called two nights before to warn us that she'd had a dream we were being pulled over by a cop with blue lights.

Things That Go "BUMP" In The Night: Hoop had the car set on cruise control at 80. We were slowly passing the line of traffic in the right lane, when suddenly a semi whipped in behind us. The semi sped up, riding our ass in an attempt to get us to move over. Hoop slowed down a bit, trying to get him to back off. None of this would have been so bad... If the semi driver hadn't retaliated by bumping us. After several minutes of this game, Hoop waved his phone out the window as I dialed 911. I frantically talked to the dispatcher as the truck weaved from the now open right lane back into the left lane so that he could ride up and bump us again.

Eventually he got tired of it and decided to pass us. As he passed he flipped us the bird and then swung into our lane 3-4 feet trying to run us off the road. We sped up beside him as the dispatch walked us through what descriptive information she needed. The driver must have realized what we were doing because he exited on the next ramp and called in to the police himself. His complaint? We wouldn't let him pass. Evidently that gives him the right to try and KILL US. The cop took written statements and said we might hear something in a month or two. I love our fucking justice system.

The strangest part of it all happened while Hoop was filling out his statement. I was leaning against the car, staring off in shock at what had just happened. It was then that I noticed the cop lights. Blue, blue, blue, red, white. Blue lights... I told Hoop as we were driving off. He stared at me for a minute and finally said, "Maybe she was seeing it through your eyes huh?" After a minute of silence I leaned over to Hoop. "Do you think she could dream of us winning the Lotto next time?"

Daily Hoop Conversation:
Hoop: Hey honey, check out that sign on the trail.
Tink: "Stone Door Loop?"
Hoop: No. *Points*
Tink: "Big Creek Rim?"
Hoop: No. *Points*
Tink: What?
Hoop: "Trail Head"
Tink: Forget it Hoop.

Daily Hoop Conversation 2:
Tink: Why do we have to sign in before we can hike?
Hoop: Maybe they don't expect us to come back out?
Tink: Why do I feel like we're in the sequel of "The Hills Have Eyes?"
Hoop: Well, I think we just figured out why they call it "SAVAGE Gulf."

Tomorrow, more stories of our vacation: "Why NOT to do plumbing while drunk" and "Mishaps with Four-wheelers."


At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Chelle Y. said...

Wow, that's scary. It sounds like something out of a scary movie. Glad to hear that you did not get hurt!

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger mama_tulip said...

Good God it's a wonder y'all weren't killed. Good on you for calling the cops. I hate asshole drivers like that. Grrrr.

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger DebbieDoesLife said...

OMG! I'm glad you are okay. Those big truckers can be such asshats.

Are you smoking again??? I thought we gave that up? Did you take a pic of the waterfall? I would love to see it.

I'm with Hoop. Have your mom dream about something better next time.

Trail Head....heh, heh, heh. Hoop was hoping to get himself some of that.

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Jay said...

I think they should build a special lane for the big trucks, they're a menace on the roads. Or maybe you should start carrying a concealed weapon, like a bazooka for times like that.

Maybe someday you can go to Kentucky and visit Big Bone Lick State Park. Best part in it's on Beaver Road!

It's really pretty nice, I saw the sign for it just outside of Cincy driving south and just HAD to go there.


At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Foo said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Foo said...

Like chelle said, it sounds like one of those cheesy movies from the '70s, where some milquetoast is driving across the West with his family packed into the station wagon and ends up being stalked by some inbred, slack-jawed psychopath in a log hauler.

First, let me say I'm glad you guys are okay.

Then, let me simply observe that if you're rattled by that encounter, you wouldn't last a week in Dallas traffic.

Next time you're up Nashville way, you might consider taking your detour during the visit. Mammoth Cave National Park (Mammoth Cave, KY) is maybe an hour and forty-five minutes up I-65. The park's beautiful (several "potato caves" with waterfalls right off the trails) and the cave tours are interesting if you haven't already been on them a dozen times.

jay: And then there's the quite-real <*giggle*> Knob Lick, KY.

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Tink said...

Chelle + Mama T: I told Hoop afterward, "I didn't think crap like this actually HAPPENED. I mean, we used to laugh at how silly these kind of scenes were in old movies."

Deb: I meant from all the years of smoking. I took tons of pictures from the whole trip and I'll be sure to post them for you as soon as I can make it off the couch. So... Maybe next week lol.

Jay: Ahaha. A bazooka. Knowing me I'd point it the wrong way and blow up our own car. Thanks for the site! I think I'm going to pick up that "Weird U.S." book before the next roadtrip. I wanted to see some oddities dang it!


Foo: *Writes on notepad* Grow balls before driving through Dallas. Check. Potato Caves? Are the natives "savage?" hehe

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Foo said...

Oo'er, yer a smooth one. Potatoes in a cave... The Hills Have Eyes.

Nicely done.

The cave I was thinking of is actually too large to be a "potato cave". It's probably 8 feet tall, 25 yards deep, and about as wide. As I understand it, though, potato caves were dug in porous limestone or decaying granite and used as a place to store potatoes during the winter.

Kentuckians use the term more loosely to describe a smallish cave.

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Arabella said...

Glad you got out of that one okay! It's like something from a scary movie!

At 18 April, 2006, Anonymous TB said...

Welcome back! And also, holy shit. That's like something out of a movie. Thank god the cops actually showed up. I hate semi drivers with the heat of a thousand suns. (I just got back from a road trip myself).

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Chris said...

Whoa. That's scary!! And eerie about Hoop's mom's dream...

I can hardly wait to hear more about the vacation, with those taglines...

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Tink said...

Foo: "Potatoes in a cave... The Hills Have Eyes." *Chokes on spit* I didn't think ANYONE would get that! As always, you're amazing.

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger EE said...

OMG Tink, I can't even imagine. I would have been so freaked! (((you guys)))

LOL at Hoop convo #2...that has always worried me a bit too that they make pple do that.

At 18 April, 2006, Blogger Mignon said...

Wow! Bumped by a semi - I would've been pulling some Thelma and Louise shit on his ass (in my mind)!!

I've hiked on marked trails my whole life, seen the 'Trail Head' sign a gazillion times and never Got It.
*hangs head in shame*

At 19 April, 2006, Blogger R. Robyn said...

Oddly, I'm glad it was you guys in that situation and not J-Man and I. He maintains the ideal that if they want to ride your ass, you have the right to break-check em. And if they hit you, then he's in the money. I don't want to know what might happen with a truck.

At 19 April, 2006, Blogger R. Robyn said...

note: In my comment, "I" should be "me" in the first sentence, to be grammatically correct. Let me apologize in advance for any incovenience this may have caused.

At 19 April, 2006, Blogger Cheryl said...

Tink: If you and Hoop ever did come to visit Dallas, we'd cart ya around. Ain't no way I'd wish that damned traffic on anyone. That truck driver incident is common here. Took me forever (at least 1 year) to wonder my way onto the highways down here not to forget those ridiculously high overpasses that stand almost as high as the Chicago Sears Tower!

Next time, make sure ya got some dynomite loaded into your car to throw out the window at the trucker. That should stop'em! *snicker*


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