January 7, 2017: Goodbye Grandma

We got up in the Super 8 in Atoka, Oklahoma this morning.  I was just about to get into the shower when Gwen called me to tell me that grandma had just passed.  The bleeding in her brain was just too much and she could not hold on any longer.  She had never regained consciousness and had been totally unresponsive for some time.  So we are no longer in a hurry to get to Ohio, we can take our time now.

We went down to check about breakfast.  The room said that it was open until ten but last night they had said nine thirty.  It was a quarter till ten and we had just missed it.  So we went back to the room and found ourselves locked out.  Even the hotel staff could not get us back into the room, the lock was broken.

So for two hours we were stuck at the hotel waiting for them to get the door open so that we could get our stuff out of it.  We had a nice view from the breakfast room as they tried to batter down the door.  The front desk guy opened the breakfast back up for us and made us breakfast while we waited.  That was an adventure on its own.

It took two hours to get us into the hotel room, so all of the time that we spent last night driving to get up to Oklahoma was lost from that.  We’d have been better off not leaving until this morning.

We got on the road and put in a long day. We actually had lunch with the Ralstons not far past Joplin, Missouri.  We were crossing paths out on Interstate 44 and were able to stop at a Subway there and get lunch together.  How weird that we crossed there.

We were in central Missouri, late at night, when the back left tire blew on the Nissan Quest.  It took a few minutes to figure out what had happened.  I pulled over at the best place that I could find.  We got out and looked and saw that the tire was totally toast. It was still there and no wheel damage, but the tire was useless.

It was a really busy and narrow part of I44 but thankfully, almost instantly, a wrecker pulled up and blocked traffic for us.  Nick, who was driving the wrecker, changed the tire for us at no charge and got us underway on our spare.  It was about 90 miles to St. Louis where we were going to Karen’s house to spend the night anyway.

I was so tired and so sick by the time that we were getting towards St. Louis that Dominica had to drive.  We limped into town and got to Karen’s house pretty late.  We hung out with Paul and Karen for a few hours before getting off to bed.  Lots of tequila tonight.