I went back out to the camp today to chill. I brought some books with me, a few DVDs, and of course.... US Weekly. What!? I had to! I had to find out if the cover was correct and that Scarlett and Ryan Reynolds are really getting back together. Sorry ladies....looks like they are. And by "ladies" I mean "Katie McNemar".
I intended on staying at the camp again and coming back into town tomorrow morning. I even took my dad's rifle with me this time so that I wouldn't be so scared sleeping out there all by myself. (US Weekly and guns, that's just how I roll). I thought I was going to have a quiet day and evening at the camp, but God had a different plan....
As I was watching an episode of Saturday Night Live starring my doppelganger, Drew Barrymore, I heard a knock at the door. I'll be honest. It scared the living crap out of me. I didn't hear a car come up the driveway, so I wasn't expecting to hear a knock. My dad is constantly asking me not to go out to the camp by myself because he is afraid something will happen and I will be too far away from people to get help in time. I always tell him that he worries to much, and that he needs to just relax and trust that I will be fine. But when I heard that unexpected knock, my first thought was...should I answer the door with the shotgun??? It's not loaded or anything, but that's what women in westerns do and it seems to be pretty effective. I would say something like, "Who the hell are you and what are you doing in these here parts!? You got ten seconds to get off my porch or I'm gonna start shooting. So SCRAM!" Don't worry, I immediately decided against it. As I turned the corner I see the face of my dad peeking through the window. At that point I almost wished I would have answered the door holding the gun. That would have made him proud.
He tells me that he was "in the area" (20 miles from our home) picking up a chainsaw from some dude that worked on it for him, and decided to stop by the camp and say "hi". He and his buddy Bailey, our dog, came in and sat down for a bit. My dad built a fire in the fireplace for me. I never build a fire when I am out there by myself because I truly have no talent whatsoever as a firestarter and usually end up smoking the place up and/or burning myself and others. So there we were, sitting in rocking chairs in front of the fire. A view of the roaring river in front of us. Just chatting and laughing. Bailey hopped up the rocking chair with me and took a little tiger snooze.
He and Bailey were there for about an hour and then decide to head back to town. I say my goodbyes and head back to my spot by the fire to continue my education in celebrity plastic surgery, when I hear the door open again. It's my dad. He looks at me and says, "We've got a problem." I follow him outside to see that his front driver's side tire is completely flat. I walk over and look at the tire to find a small gash in the tire wall. There was no way to patch it. He tells me that he is going to have to call someone to come out and change the tire for him because he doesn't have a jack. As he is turning around to go back inside, I tell him that I have a jack and a tire iron in the Jeep, so we should be able to change it ourselves with no problem. (Truth be told, I love doing this kind of stuff!)
When I was 15 my dad taught me how to change my own oil, my own tires, clean my battery, check my oil, etc just so that I would always be prepared to handle things on my own. He also bought Kirk and I standard vehicles so that we would learn to drive a 5-speed and be able to drive any vehicle. Smart dad.
End of Flashback
The first thing my dad wants to do is make sure we can lower the spare tire down from under his truck. We quickly find that the tire is rusted on. He's never used it the entire time that he's had the truck. He and I are both crawling around on the ice covered ground trying to figure out a way to get the tire off. Just as we were about to give up and call for help I realized that my spare tire for my Jeep is the same size tire so I thought that might work. Our next move was to get the truck up in the air so we could get the tire off.
|As I was holding the lug nuts I had a flash back from A Christmas Story and||yelled out, "OH FUUUUUUDGE".|
We finally got the tire in the air and the lug nuts off, but lo and behold, the tire was rusted on and we couldn't budge it. We thought we'd been beat. We went inside to call a guy down the road to ask for help, but he didn't answer. I remembered that the last time I had a flat tire the same thing happened and Kirk took care of it for me. So I called Kirk for advice. He told us to fill up the tire all the way and then start kicking the crap out of the tire until it pops off. For a little background, I need to tell you that although my dad used to be a karate teacher, he has had two hip replacements surgeries and can barely get up and down, not to mention walk very far. Kicking this tire off was going to be a chore. But, we really had no choice but to try, and honestly, I was just excited to kick something.
Dad and I both take turns kicking the crap out of that tire, but it wouldn't budge. So, my dad did what any normal red-blooded WV redneck would do. He took the Hammer of Thor to it....
|By the Hammer of Thor this tire will come off!!!|
That's all it took...a few swift hits with the flat end of that bad boy and the tire popped right off. Phew! And believe me, I did way more than take pictures. My hands were already getting blistered from working the crank on the tire-jack, so I was hoping that we were just about done.
|Bailey was no help at all. She couldn't tell the different between and box-end wrench and socket wrench. Dumb dog.|
But, as I wheeled my spare tire from the Jeep over, we realized we had another problem. The hubcap on my Jeep tire wasn't built for a truck with lock-in hubs so it wasn't going to fit. We were both frustrated. We had gotten so far only to be foiled again. DRATS!
I thought my dad was going to give up, but it was him that said, "well, lets work on getting that spare down again". So we did. He and I worked together and got the rusty spare tire lowered down. We were both freezing and filthy, but as soon as he said, "It's moving! I can't believe it!" I yelled out, "Hallelujha, PRAISE God!" and then did a little happy dance. The spare needed some air, so we hooked it up to an air pump and went inside to bask in the glow of our glorious win! We did it!!! At every turn it seemed impossible, but with the two of us working together and encouraging each other...we did it!! I decided to leave the camp and follow my dad home to make sure he didn't have any complications. He was parked behind me so I hopped in my Jeep and pulled out of his way.
|It's pretty blurry, but....I had to post it anyway.|
I was so happy that everything had worked out. As my dad was tightening up the lug nuts I said, "You see Dad, God was looking out for you. If you would have gotten on the road with that gash in your tire, it might have blown your tire and you could have wrecked." He agreed with me and told me it was a little odd that he had driven a little out of his way to come see me.
I was sitting in my Jeep waiting for my dad to pull in behind me when I thought I heard some clicking sound. I opened my door and discovered that the clicking sound was my dad's starter. Now my dad's truck wouldn't start. I couldn't believe it! We worked all that time to change the tire and now the truck won't start. What's up with that!? I started praying with all my might that God would start his truck so that I could end my blog saying that if you keep trying even when it's hard, things will work out for you. But, it didn't start.
The next problem was....his truck was blocking me in. So, as the sun was setting in the hills behind us, we did the only thing we could do. We pushed the truck out of the way. And I'm not talking about some perfectly flat surface. The place we park our cars is made of rocks and is slightly uphill. I honestly didn't know if we could do it. So we worked together to make it happen. We would rock it back toward him and as it rocked forward we would push with all our might. I was seriously afraid that my dad might have a heart attack or something. It was hard work. BUT, we did it. We pushed it out of the way and were able to get the Jeep through.
We were both frustrated at first that things didn't work out, but then we realized...they actually DID work out. If my dad hadn't stopped by to see me then he could have broken down or blown a tire while he was driving on icy roads and hurt himself and/or someone else. It was a blessing from God that I was there to help him change his tire and had the equipment to do so. One less thing to worry about. But the real gift from the whole experience came from our ride home together. As we took a slow drive home, we had an amazing conversation. One of those conversations that makes you never want to quit talking. The best part of all of it was that we worked together. We were a team. We didn't want to give up if we didn't have to. It felt good.
(insert applause here)
And for those of you that don't appreciate a good tire-changing story, I give you this:
|Justin Bieber: brought to you by the Buckhannon Main Street Antiques and Collectables storefront|
And for those of you that don't have Bieber fever, I give you a picture of a train:
|The train went by while we were changing the tire. CHooo choooo!|