We stormed through Gen's back door. Gen told Ted how to get to the U-Haul center and Ted, Paul, and Ken went after the truck. I looked around Gen's kitchen, expecting to see a stack of packed and sealed boxes there. Nope. I looked for them in the living room. None there, either. I looked in the laundry, the bathroom, and the bedrooms. I found a pile of empty boxes on the front porch, but nothing had been packed. I recognized a dreadful burning in my stomach and spasms in my shoulders that signaled something I hadn't felt since I left home in 1970--thwarted intentions at the hands of my mother.
Alicia, Valine, and I dispatched ourselves to various rooms and began throwing stuff into boxes, which Carole had procured and stashed on the porch, along with tape and markers, to make it easier for Gen to do her part. God bless Carole.
When the guys got back with the truck, they began loading furniture and the few boxes we had packed. We worked until everything was packed but the kitchen and the stuff we all needed for the night. It was nearly midnight by then. Gen had gone to bed around 9:00. The rest of us collapsed onto the floor into the sleeping bags we brought along. Valine stayed up to pack the kitchen. God bless Valine.
We loaded up the remaining stuff in the morning. We were finished by 11 a.m. Ted, Paul, and Alicia piled into the U-Haul and took off, with Alicia occupying the hot seat in the middle. I loaded up Gen and her cat into the van, along with Ken and Valine, and we set out behind the van, headed east, into a rainstorm coming up from the southeast.
We took the route through the West Virginia mountains, along that awful stretch of I-77 that connects I-70 with I-64. This was at Gen's request. She wanted to pick up the CB radio antenna that I had failed to collect from her wrecked Lumina several weeks earlier when I took her back to Ohio after her discharge from the hospital in Lewisberg. By the time we reached I-64, night had fallen, along with plenty of rain. Ted pulled off for dinner west of Charlottesville. I followed him off the interstate, but lost him in town.
We ate fast food and rushed back to the interstate. I had no idea where the U-Haul was and I was mightily disappointed at losing Ted, Paul, and Alicia. It rained hard for the rest of the trip. We drove past Richmond and onto U.S. 360 for the remaining 60 miles of the trip to Heathsville.