Updated: Aug 11, 2021
Last week, I was in Durham North Carolina, wondering how I found myself in that predicament. My home is in Wildwood Georgia, 7 hours away, I was sitting behind the wheel of a 16' rental box truck. I couldn’t find a place to park at Duke Ambulatory Surgical Center. The box truck was 10‘6“ tall and wouldn’t fit in any of the parking garages. It all began helping a friend…
It actually started without me, three days prior. A close friend of mine, Sandy, was in the process of doing many things all at once. She had just bought a small cottage near me and was moving into it from Virginia. She happens to have a 12' camping trailer that she was towing behind her Jeep when her transmission went out.
She was planning on arriving on Saturday. On Sunday, we would make a leisurely trip to North Carolina. She would have her pre operation doctor visit on Monday at 3:15 pm. Yes, she was preparing to have foot surgery. I definitely applaud the time she’s taking away from work to get healthy.
Things just didn’t work out. She woke up on Sunday ready to figure out what to do. She decided to rent a moving van to tow her camping trailer packed with some of her furniture to her new home in Georgia. First, she had to get the jeep squared away. She hadn’t driven very far from her previous home town, so she got the jeep towed to her car repair shop in Martinsville, Virginia.
The tow truck guy helped her find a 26' rental van. He drove her to the shop. Thank God! It had been rented out the day before. She called U-Haul booking. They said they had a van that would work for her. Since she had no vehicle, she called on a lady that had given her an Uber ride before to get to the second rental location, It was an hour drive away. When she got to the store, there was a sign on it that said closed until 10:30 PM, kind of strange hours. Her third try was successful; but the only person that could rent her the vehicle wouldn't be in the office for another 45 minutes. She still had to go back and pick up her camper just to escape Martinsville, Virginia.
You may wonder why she was so adamant to get back to Georgia. Her surgery was scheduled at Duke Ambulatory Surgical Center in Durham, North Carolina. Why not just stay close and not have to travel back-and-forth? It would have been easier.
She wasn't just concerned about getting her camper home. Sandy's surgery prohibited her from driving for several weeks post operation. She wanted to secure her camper and had to get back to Georgia to drop off her dog. She had set up a pet sitter to take care of the pup while we would be gone for her surgery.
You might also wonder why the surgery was being done in Durham North Carolina. Sandy had done her research. The surgery she was having done on her foot was quite new. Her doctor has been doing the surgery for five years. She wanted the best close to where she worked in Virginia. That way she could get to know her doctor before the surgery and make the necessary appointments to see the same doctor.
When in the world did I come in? I’m the person that’s driving her from Georgia back out to Durham, North Carolina because she had been up for 24 hours straight and back after the surgery.. She can’t drive for a while. The game plan had been to use her jeep to go out there and back. That plan went down the tubes when her mechanic asked her if she had any butter because the transmission was toast.
Why didn’t you take your car? Two weeks prior, I had a flat tire. I ran over to my local tire company, and they fixed it with a plug. I just hadn’t had a chance to order four new tires and get them put on my car. My friend and I were a little bit worried about driving my car with a plugged tire all the way out to Durham, North Carolina and back to Wildwood, Georgia. We had the great idea to use the 16' box truck. The rental company had forced her to rent it for five days because of how far she was traveling. It was new with just 7,000 miles on it. We knew it wouldn't break down.
She got into Wildwood, Georgia at 5:30am on Monday morning last week. I packed a new favorite snack that another girlfriend had shown me. The salt and vinegar almonds proved to be a good diabetic snack while travelling. It was helpful in keeping my blood sugar low while I was stress eating. We were in a time crunch. I started driving out at 6:30am. We had just enough time to get to her pre-op doctor's appointment in Durham, North Carolina at 3:15pm. We arrived at 3:09pm.
We thought we had left our challenging problems behind us. We proceeded to a nearby town, Raleigh, North Carolina, for dinner. Sandy knew the area well enough to get me into a large parking lot and easily park the van. We enjoyed dinner and exploring the town.
The next morning, it was time for Sandy's foot surgery. Our Lemony Snicket's series of unfortunate events wasn't quite over. The van is a wide vehicle. An added complication is the height of the vehicle. Most medical facilities create parking garages with an over head clearance of 7’6”. So when the night hospital security officer told me to park in the garage, I knew I’d sheer off the top of the 10'6" moving van if I tried it. That created a whole conversation about our current situation and how we got there. I was lucky the daytime security officer, Earnie, was kind enough to let me park in the front of the building tucked out of the way of the construction in front of me and past the main entrance to the building. It made it really easy to get Sandy loaded up after her surgery for the trip back home. She's safely at home recovering now.
The salt and vinegar almonds were a life saver on the rushed portion of our journey. They remind me of salt and vinegar potato chips, so watch your portion sizes. I make these a treat because of the salt, but the almonds are a great protein source without carbohydrates or sugar spiking blood sugar. So when your friends drop in on you and pull out their snacks, you have your own healthier version. Let me know if you try this snack. Please comment, like, share, and come back next week for more recipes, ideas, and tips. Subscribe to the website, if you would like weekly email reminders to add more recipes to your recipe book.
Disclaimer: This is not medical advice, but a compilation of research from medical sites. Make sure to see your doctor and have up to date lab work.