The Suitcase Lady


July 1, 2008, 10:28 pm

I was coming home from work last week, driving through Green Bay, when a van pulled in front of me. The back window of the van was covered with a film of dirt. Written in the dirt was the following message:

2000 miles, 2 kids, sleeping wife.
Its true!

The plates on the van were from Washington state.

I’m sure that many of us have taken road trips that could have benefited from similar, large infusions of humor.

One of my more memorable trips started out calmly. I had just finished school in June, summer days lay ahead, and my husband and I were setting off on a road trip to NY City to visit our daughter and her husband.

I was happily driving through Pennsylvania, relaxed and carefree. My husband was napping. Then, as I paid another toll on the Pennsylvania turnpike, a small voice whispered in my head, “There are no tolls on the road to New York City.” I pulled over at the next rest stop, woke up my husband and announced that I had made a rather major navigational error. Apparently I thought I could get to NYC on automatic pilot. I was actually well on the way to Washington D.C.

Moments like these can be the beginning of the end to a marriage. But my husband had the best possible response – he started laughing. Soon we were both laughing so hard we could hardly read the road map. The map revealed I had gone 130 miles on the wrong road. To get back north again the route went through Hershey, Pennsylvania. Who can’t be happy in a town that smells of chocolate and has street lights shaped like Hershey Kisses? We even hit the Holland Tunnel by 6:30 that night.

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