Big rich travel

Last night in Atlanta

Last night in Atlanta

Well, it’s been an eventful trip so far! As most of you know, I’m moving across the country from Atlanta to Seattle (my hometown). I left Atlanta two days ago on the 22nd, and stayed in a hotel the night of the 21st so that it would be “easy” to get up and out (plus, I had moved out of my apartment). I didn’t want to inconvenience friends and honestly, was too sad to say goodbye. The hotel seemed like the best choice. It was, except when I came outside in the morning to leave, someone had hit my car. And driven away.


The damage isn’t that bad, but there’s damage. And the car has (had) 3,500 miles on it. I didn’t freak out though. What could I do? I just continued onto Shreveport, LA – my first stop for the night.

I decided that before I reached the hotel I would fill up my gas tank and clean the windshield so that I didn’t have to worry about it in the morning. I stopped at a gas station and started filling up next to a guy in a Jetta. I used the pump handle holder-thingy so that the gas was filling the tank by itself and proceeded to clean the window. The Jetta guy was using the squeegee in the bucket closest to our cars, so I had to walk across the gas station lot to get another one. During that time, I heard a scream. I looked over and gas was SPRAYING out of my car.

The auto thingy didn’t work, so the gas kept pumping even when the tank was full. Jetta guy was kind and pulled the pump out, but gas continued to spray onto the ground. I had to clean it all up, and was reminded of this scene from the movie Zoolander:

Luckily there were no matches involved. I continued to the hotel, and night #2 was uneventful. Onward to Texas!

It took three hours to drive into Dallas yesterday morning, and the reason for driving into Dallas was to pick up my mom who had flown in from Seattle. I found out today that the reason she flew into Dallas rather than Atlanta was to make sure that I was *really* going to move to Seattle. I was always committed, but I guess she had to make sure?

Big Rich Dallas

Big Rich Dallas

Did you guys know that Dallas is under major construction? Oh dear. I wasn’t used to driving in all of it. I think it was frustrating to everyone else as well, because there was a lot of tension on the road. I found myself referring to the show “Big Rich Texas,” but applying it to other people in traffic. For instance, “move over, Big Rich Texas” and “slow your roll, Big Rich Texas.” It morphed into calling things “Big Rich.” Like “Big Rich pugs” and “Big Rich mom.” Then I found myself being truly annoying to everyone in the car including myself, so I stopped. Big rich annoying.

I made it through Dallas in one piece, despite the construction. My mom and I headed to Amarillo. Which brings me to another adventure.

My mom can drive a manual transmission, but my car is a little bit different. I have a Subaru WRX STI with a factory installed short shift, and it’s a six-speed. If your eyes are rolling back into your head, to sum it up I like fast, turbocharged cars and my shifter isn’t the easiest to use. Which means that it’s not hard to stall it if you aren’t used to it.

Which she did several times.

My mom kept shifting from 2nd to 5th, which was driving me crazy – because it’s my new car (my new, hit car) and it’s also really bad for the clutch and motor. So what happens? The “check engine” light goes on and about four other lights start flashing. From the lights on the instrument panel you would have thought the car was going to explode. I started FREAKING out. My car is new, and I just got hit . . . and now this??? I asked her to pull over and called the Subaru dealership in Amarillo (which was two hours away at this point in our journey). Luckily someone answered the phone – he told us to continue on to Amarillo. We were kinda scared, but we had to keep driving, and I just figured if my car got more broken that it was under factory warranty. All we needed to do was make it to Amarillo!

Did I mention that Amarillo is WINDY?! I have never, ever experienced wind like that. It had been hot during the day (82 degrees) and it got very cold at night. The wind made me want to cry and I was wearing flip flops. I wanted to cry just getting my suitcase out of the car. Whew!

This morning we got up at 6:30 to visit the Subaru dealership we had spoken with and have a computer read the car – it turns out one of the cylinders misfired due to my mom’s previously discussed shifting habits. I wasn’t mad . . . I was just happy we were in one piece and the car wasn’t going to explode.

Though I keep reminding her of it, heh heh. I wouldn’t be a good daughter if I didn’t!

Rocky Mountain High

Rocky Mountain High

I have mixed feelings about everything, but ultimately I think it will all turn out okay. We’re stopping in Boise tomorrow. Sunday? Seattle! We left Amarillo and arrived in Moab, UT, this evening. It was nice to see mountains again, and I love the southwest because of the crazy terrain. The United States is truly amazing, and by car is such a unique way to see it.


  1. says

    Wow Amy that is quite an adventure so far! So sorry about your car being hit, BOO!! And I’m selfishly a tiny bit sad I never got to meet you in Atlanta, but I’m so happy for you moving on to the next chapter. Safe travels & all the best in Seattle!

  2. Jennifer Curts says

    Oh Amy, just tell yourself “it will soon be over!” I hope you have a better time the second half of your trip. Miss you already! You know, cause you’re not immediately able to be reached since you’re driving and all. 😉

    Hope it’s okay that I pray for you to have a safe trip the rest of the way!

  3. Christine says

    You’re coming here? Wish we could meet up!!! Email me if you have time for din-din and I’ll give you my number. cnanabele at hotmail dot com.

  4. KJ says

    Thought I would give you a heads up…. We are expecting big winds and snow in the passes this weekend.

  5. says

    It almost sounds like the script of a comedy road trip movie! Heh, you can’t say the trip has been boring, you’ll remember it :). I hope lots of inspiration and energy comes from this too. And you’ve managed all those encounters/happenings, so you’ll going to get by in your new house as well. Safe travels!

  6. says

    I don’t know about you, but I am always so overed physically and emotionally when I’ve made a big move that I’m about ready for a week in a spa getting constant TLC! I hope the rest of your trip is just watching beautiful scenery. Wishing you a smooth transition to the next phase of your life.

  7. Chris says

    Oh my goodness! Quite the adventure you’ve been having!

    Sorry to hear about your car, some people are such tools.

    Continue having a safe drive!

  8. says

    Wow! What an adventure! Safe travels the rest of the way. Reminds me of when I helped my daughter drive to San Antonio from home in Indiana. But, now she lives in Seattle, just north of the city. Good Luck to You!!

  9. winslowwoman says

    Dallas has been under construction/destruction as long as I can recall..dangerous place to drive during rush hours!! Hope the rest of your trip is peaceful!!

  10. jengd says

    I hope all of the bumps and bruises are out of the way and the rest of the trip is smooth sailing. Enjoy the trip- you’re out of TX and that’s a good thing. (I lived there 4yrs, I’m allowed to say that.) :)

  11. Rita Marsh says

    Welcome back to the PNW! I love it here, it’s my favorite area. Though I am in the Olympia area not the big city. Your trials so far have struck a chord of memory in me. I have traveled from coast to coast by car numerous times and it is always an adventure of experiences, not all good. But the scenery is breathtaking at times, and well worth the inconveniences along the way. I hope the remainder of your trip is uneventful. Be careful over the passes. Again, welcome back! We’re glad to have you. :)

  12. Lori m says

    Amy, gosh other then myself I didn’t think anyone had “Ripley Believe it or Not Luck”.

    I’m so sorry about your new car being hit and so happy to hear the lights were a problem easily fixed.

    Prayers for a smooth and safe journey.

    Hugs, Lori m

  13. rhonlyn says

    I can barely repress my excitement at your return to our fair city! Your trip is bringing back (not so) fond memories of my cross country trip returning from the mid-west. It was fun while it lasted and GREAT to be home.

  14. pwofford says

    Well, it’s Sunday, and I hope you’ve made it to Seattle without any more misadventures. But isn’t driving cross country fun? I did that 20 years ago with my mom and dad — best trip ever, and that includes my honeymoon! I love watching the country evolve as you head west. Enjoy your new life in Seattle!

  15. Paula says

    Amy – you are so brave to drive across the country! I am so nervous on freeways that I don’t think I could do it! And you have had two of the experiences that would totally freak me out: an accident and car trouble! Good luck on your new adventure, and welcome back to the Pacific NW! Come up and visit us in Alaska – Juneau is only a three day ferry trip away from Bellingham!

  16. Becca says

    This has been quite the road trip. Hopefully you’ve made it home in one piece. Sorry about the Dallas traffic. It is awful every day and we all hate it. I often find myself writing open letters to the city of Dallas and Dallas drivers on Twitter. I’ve moved every year since the age of 18 (I’m 32) except this one, and it gets worse every time. It will all be worth it once you get settled in.

  17. PEACHES says

    Holy bergeezers! What’s next? A plague of locusts? Frogs?

    Crazytown. I could make a string of texas jokes but I will refrain, as I a, not 100% sure you are home yet and I dont want to jink it for you. Stay safe!!

  18. Katie says

    Amy, I totally sympathize with you! We moved from Texas to California and I had my two young kids in the car with me while my husband drove the moving truck. My daughter gets car sick so that was fun. We had all sorts of interesting things happen and at the end of the last day we were about 30 minutes from where we were meeting my parents to help us move our stuff out of the moving van my son pooped his pants right as we pulled into the rest stop. I was trying to get him out of the car without losing it and he wasn’t listening and I finally yelled at him and you could hear my voice cracking like I was going to burst into tears and my son looked at me and said, “Are you gonna cry now!” HAHA Gotta love kids.