Thursday, November 26, 2015
I’ll be heading out on the road for a Thanksgiving journey for the first time in many years. Road trips at Thanksgiving wore me out back in 1996 & 1997 when I was commuting between
Lockport, NY and .
I was not keeping a journal at that time of my life. However, the events of the
trips are burned into my memory. Tuscaloosa, AL
I was stacking aluminum radiator cores in Building 7 on the day shift the day before Thanksgiving 1996. This was a rate job I was very good at. My partner in sharing the center machine was Karen. She taught me how to stack and she was fast. Once we started work for the day we tried to keep the machine which made up our air centers running all the time. Starting the center machine from a dead stop would increase the chance of jam ups and down time. When our parts table would fill up, an electric eye would get covered cancelling out parts being sent. If my eye would get covered Karen would then get all the parts. She would yell.. “JIMMY my table is filling up!~!!!” That would always light a fire under my butt!!
Stacking was a rate job. I had made extra parts earlier in the week I did not record so I would give a legal count for my weeks work when I left early. This day I worked through my morning breaks and was able to get my count out just into my lunch. Karen promised to put my finished parts on the line, and record my count so I could head out on the road early. I ran out of that place to my truck and hightailed it to my house. The truck was packed with paving bricks and odds and ends.
I had moved most of my antiques south in October using a 17ft U-haul. Mom’s cat Fuzzie moved in with Chloe and me after her death in 1994. That October move was the trip my sisters found Fuzzie dead when they came to feed the cats. That was so horrible. There was no way I was going to leave Ron’s old cat Chloe behind this trip. From now on we would be travelling as a team. Chloe was startled when I scooped her up, plopped her into the cat carrier and carried her to the truck.
Chloe settled right in and travelled wonderfully. The traffic was as you would expect: Miserable. Naturally I hit
right around 5:00 p.m. I hate driving through this city. Rush hour makes it the
worst. Columbus, OH Cincinnati
was not much better. I can still see in my mind the unbroken line of red
taillights snaking into and through the metropolis.
Once I got over the river into
Kentucky things calmed
down a bit. I decided to stop for the night at what was then a Budget Host
Motel in I had stayed there before and knew there
was not a problem with Chloe. Right next door was a Erlanger, KY. .
A BIG plus in my book. White Castle
Chloe was a trooper. She made herself right at home in her regal manor.
We got an early start Thanksgiving Day and had smooth sailing into
Chloe explored the new house. It met with her approval and she claimed a perch
on top of boxes stacked up in what is now the back study.
Chloe made a number of similar trips the following year. She developed cancer: the Thanksgiving trip to
Tuscaloosa in 1997 was her last. She was such
a special cat. There was something mystical about her. When she would look into
your eyes it was like she could see into your soul. Her ashes are in a tin in
my front parlor. I have it in my will I’m to be cremated and our ashes are to
be mixed together and spread off the Appalachian Trail.
- ▼ 2015 (5)
- ► 2011 (29)
- ► 2010 (67)
- Tuscaloosa, Alabama, United States
- Retired auto worker who can now spend too much time restoring his 1922 Bungalow Home. I'm involved in a number of varied activities from collecting bricks to rowing with a masters rowing group. This blog is to share different aspects of my life on my Facebook page. I've kept an on-line journal for eight years.