This picture was a few years ago, not this morning. But… this morning it was about 12 degrees this morning when I got to the storage yard to hook up to the trailer and pull it out of there for the last time.
The locks were all frozen.
And the side door was frozen to the side of the trailer.
Both of these conditions were, of course, a result of Tuesday’s all-day rain followed by a plunge below freezing that stayed all through Wednesday.
Nothing doing but wait for the sun to warm up the (black) trailer side enough to get the locks unstuck (well, that and let the keys cool off ’cause coming out of my pocket, they were too warm due to thermal expansion to fit into the locks at all!), then carefully cut the ice bonding the door to the trailer side.
Result: what is usually a 15-20 minute trailer hookup took a bit over an hour, and then I had to load everything. Which *did* all fit.
Meanwhile, K got Scooter ready to travel and spent some last-morning-with-him time. He managed to work his way into her heart despite her best efforts.
And then there was our parting. It hurt. But not in a fight way, in a sadness way. Tears all around. I thanked K for sharing her life with me for the last 11 years, and some other things that I will not share with others as they are for her alone.
And thus I hit the road about noon. This trip is going much slower than the last trip for a variety of reasons — I’m towing VERY heavy (even though the ’65 is a good 800 lbs lighter than the ’99, there’s a LOT more Other Stuff in the trailer, plus even More Stuff in the truck), and the truck is never a high-speed cruiser even when empty. And then there are Birdie Breaks — I pull off into a rest area and let Scooter out (doors and windows FIRMLY closed and locked!) for some skritches and shoulder-bird time while I make a phone call or two. Scooter’s travel cage is MUCH smaller than his regular home (which is strapped into the trailer — it won’t fit in the bed of the truck without disassembly) and also smaller than his "vacation condo", which is in the truck bed (under the hard tonneau) and will be put to use while we’re at my parents for a couple days, and he gets stir crazy if he can’t move around, plus if I’m here and he’s here, it’s supposed to mean that he’s free to move around. Which doesn’t work in a moving vehicle — it’s unsafe for the bird AND the driver unless there’s an additional human to serve as bird-handler.
This is the longest he’s been in his travel cage at one stretch since he came to Michigan from Oklahoma with us in 2003 as a 3-month-old weanling.
But he’s a very good boy. He got his rhythm to the vehicle motions after a couple hours.
He is currently snoozing in his (covered) travel cage over on the bar area of my hotel room at Nameless Chain Hotel I Like That Doesn’t Allow Pets.
He came in disguised as my winter parka. He’ll leave the same way. 😉
Today: about 450 miles, Waterford to Effingham. Tomorrow — another 450 miles, Effingham to Tulsa.