The Trip – Part 1

My husband Curt, recently decided to close down a used book business we had started for our youngest son a few years back. Last week he made a 600 mile round trip to eastern Washington to sell our inventory. He planned a long day trip that included 5-6 hours of driving to get there, 2-3 hours of business, and 5-6 hours for the return trip. But sometimes plans don’t go as expected.

Noticing relatively low gas prices about two-thirds of the way there, Curt made a mental note to fill his tank in this area on the way back. Unfortunately, his tank was near empty by the time he arrived at his destination so, being the frugal man that he is, Curt bought just enough gas at the higher price to easily make it back to the area where he could fill the tank at a lower price per gallon.

While talking to an associate by phone on the return trip, he missed the turnoff and made a snap decision to continue toward home on the Washington side of the river. It would be faster than turning round and backtracking and he could cross the river into Oregon at the next bridge. Besides, it was an easy drive on a straight road and just as fast as the Interstate on the other side of the river.

Half an hour later, Curt realized he had not seen a gas station since his decision to take the alternate route home. He knew he didn’t have enough gas to turn around and go back so he kept going. Another 20 minutes passed as his tank drained to near-empty. Suddenly in the distance, there appeared a great light – a sign of modern civilization – and of hope. How far away was the light? He couldn’t tell.

Curt's fuel gauge now indicated he had just eight miles left to empty. Eight miles later, the light was closer. Driving another four miles on fumes with the fuel gauge boldly flashing “zero miles to empty,” he arrived at the source of the great light. It was an industrial power plant. That was it - no service stations and no other signs of life.

Do you ever have plans that don’t work out the way you imagined? Tune in tomorrow for the rest of the story.


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