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More Stories - The Way We Were

Aboard the Queen Elizabeth
By Hilda Graham    

Beginning of the trip:

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It was amazing to hear some of the comments the children made as we drove through different states after living in West Texas all of their lives - the scenery was some much different.  People who lived or had traveled through West Texas will have noticed the lack of trees, etc.; it was more like a desert area.  I remember when we drove through Tennessee that Steven, the 3 year old,  wanted to know who crushed all the trees together.  This was a sight for him as he was used to seeing very few trees in West Texas.  We traveled about 750 miles the second day, the miles per hour we could legally travel was 70 MPH,  which we maintained,  but by now the children were getting tired and thought we were never going to reach New York, and that we were driving too slow.  We assured them that when we finally reached the Pennsylvania turnpike we would be able to pick up speed.  This encouraged them but for hours.  It seemed all we heard was "are we there yet?".  The adults were thinking the same thing but tried to pacify the young ones.

Oh, how I remember when we reached Wheeling West Virginia; going around the mountains how we were we expecting to see the rear end of the trailer as we rounded the curves on the road.  It was up so high we could look down and see the tops of Churches and other buildings.  Now Sheila was afraid of heights; she turned several shades of white and would not look down.  I believe she had her hands clasped so tight she almost cut off her circulation.

We decided to spend one more night at a motel and hopefully we would reach New York the next day.  I was beginning to think we never reach our destination.  Well one more day, we hoped we had allowed ourselves ample time, we thought, but must admit we might be pushing our luck.  We had made reservations at hotel close to where the ship was docked and we were really sweating it out as they say. 

I might add a little note here as we drove through some of the larger cities a lot of cabbies and others we would hear shouts of "Hi there, Texas".  I guess back then they were not used to seeing Texas license plates.  It was always good to know we were welcome. 

Finally after what seemed to be an eternity, we started to see signs pointing to the Pennsylvania Turnpike.  What a relief!  Finally we reached a toll booth ands we still had quite a way to go.

Now for the shocker upon reaching the booth we were told that because we had six wheels (remember the two on the trailer) we were to be classified as a truck and only allowed to drive 45 miles per hour.  Just think, after driving through Wheeling, VA and around the mountains in a fairly heavy rain and now on a turnpike with good highways we had to drive at this slow speed and still hoped to get there while the Elizabeth was still in port.  This was adding insult to Injury.  Believe it or not we did reach our destination we were a little late and afraid we might have lost our reservations at the Hotel.  But luck was with us. 
 

This is last the end of our tale of woe.  Our husbands managed to get us aboard ship, complete with luggage.  We later found out that they decided not to pull the trailer back having to drive so slowly.  They had it parked on the hotel parking lot; apparently there was someone in the parking lot and our two gallant husbands asked him if he might know someone who would be interested in buying the trailer, and believe it or not they sold it to him for a mere $25.00.  Yes, that is right,. a 25 measly dollars.

Sheila and I worried about them making the trip back to Texas for now the weather was really bad.  Apparently they made it back to The Red River between Oklahoma and Texas which was just about to shut down because of the flooding.  They were the last car to cross. and they made it back to Texas a lot faster than we made it to New York from there.

This is not the end of the story as we had a few which I now consider humorous occasions aboard ship, I will continue this later. ...More >>>

Copyright 2005 Hilda Graham

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