|Here are my great grandparents on my mother's side getting |
ready for a winter car trip.
The memory that sticks in my mind about traveling at Christmas came from a Christmas Eve when my parents, two sisters and I were on our way from Wichita to Boulder, Colorado to visit my grandmother, uncle and cousins for the holiday. My sisters and I were so excited to be going because we always had so much fun with our cousins. Just across the Kansas/Colorado border, on I-70, the fan belt broke while we were passing through a very small town. Dad pulled into a service station, that was getting ready to close early for the holiday, manned by one attendant. I remember the sinking feeling in my stomach as Dad came back to the car to tell Mom that there wasn't a mechanic to help us. Sitting in the back seat of the dark, cold car, my sisters and I looked at each other and felt sorry for ourselves. I watched people walk by and hoped someone would come to our rescue. It was such a helpless feeling. Mom tried to remain cheerful amid our questions that seemed all too important to us. "Would we miss Christmas? Will we have to spend Christmas in this little town? In this car? Would Santa know?" Mom answered our questions calmly. Finally, Dad returned to the car with an announcement. He would have to do the repair himself but the attendant had offered the light and warmth of the garage to do the work. I'm not sure how long it took him but I do remember the sense of hope that settled inside me. We got to Boulder that night, albeit later than planned. My only other memory is feeling relief and happiness at arriving at Uncle Duane's house, lit welcomingly with Christmas lights, before Christmas day. It made it that much more special.