We went to bed early on Friday night at the hotel. I looked at the clock when I turned out the light and it said 8:40. Rose fell asleep right away but it must have been too early for me because I just lied there trying to sleep but failing.
The clock said 9:40 the last time I looked before finally falling asleep. Not long after that Chris was on the bed making sure I was awake. He must have thought I had a concussion and spent the rest of the night making sure I didn’t get any sleep. Since it was a hotel room, I couldn’t put him out and close the door.
When I got up at 4:15, Chris decided his work was done and went to sleep. Rose commented on how great her sleep was that night. Grrrrrrrrrr.
We got on the road at about quarter after six and the gps on Rose’s iPhone put us on the highway going in the wrong direction. After about five minutes it figured out we were going in the wrong direction and told us to get off. I’ve had plenty of experience getting erroneous directions from the gps, especially in Germany where the navigation system seemed to delight in sending us in the wrong direction, that I just didn’t trust it.
It was still dark and I couldn’t tell east from west so I opened Google Maps on my phone but it could not get a gps signal so, after intense discussion, we decided to trust it and turned around. Fortunately, it was the right choice.
The rest of the trip went well. I called U-Haul when we were in Tampa to try to change the drop off location for our trailer. There is a gas station that deals in U-Hauls at the end of our neighborhood but when I picked it up that place wasn’t on his map. It took about thirty minutes to get through to someone but then they had to transfer me and hung up instead. Before that call, dealing with U-Haul had been a frustrating experience, except for when I picked it up, which was okay. After that call I felt like I would never rent from them again but they are pretty much a monopoly so what choice would I have?
We got home just before 3 p.m. I shut the cats in the Florida room with food, water and litter and opened their crates.
I then unloaded the truck and trailer in about one hour and forty five minutes. When I finished, Rose and I went to our designated drop off location. When we got there we could find no place to put the trailer and the office was closed. It was a used car lot that also handled U-Hauls and the small parking lot was jammed full of used cars and U-Hauls.
We ended up bringing the trailer back home and took Rose’s car out for mediteranian food for dinner. On the way I called U-Haul and requested a call back, which I got when I was in the restaurant. The guy on the phone said the location printed on my paperwork was not the location in his system. Big surprise there. He gave me the address of a major U-Haul location in Clearwater that was open until seven, so we raced home, got the truck, and made it there with five minutes to spare.
When we pulled in there was a sign that said “Drop Offs” so we pulled through and stopped. I got out and was met by a friendly man who immediately unhooked the trailer and said, “Ok, you’re all set.”
‘That’s it?” I said. “You don’t need my paperwork?”
“Nope,” he said. I just need to take a picture of the number and you’ll get a confirmation in your email.”
Okay, so maybe I will rent a U-Haul again, but only from that location.
Everyone seems happy to be home. The house is full of boxes now but they still seem perfectly comfortable, like we never left. They did, however, do a little exploring before settling down.
As I write this Saturday night, Frankie is napping in the dining room by the window and Chris is napping next to me on the bed. Floki was here next to Chris but he left.
Now we have to figure out what to do with all the stuff we brought back. Once we do, things should get back to normal pretty quickly.