We head out from Fairfax, Virginia and travel by commuter train to pick up my sister in Baltimore, Maryland. She’s donating her 2000 Honda CRV to our cause, as she’s headed to Egypt for an adventure of her own. We drop her off in New York City for her flight, stay at a friend’s house overnight in New Jersey, then drive our new car back to Fairfax to load her up with all our wordly possessions.
We name the car Horatio, after the very first American roadtripper – Horatio Nelson Jackson, who trekked across the U.S. in 63 days in 1903.
Our first few hours in Horatio are met with torrential downpour – he leaks water from the windshield, soaking the passenger’s side floorboard. I rig up a system of plastic containers which are about 80% effective. After several hours of torrential downpour, however, the floors remain soaked and my feet stay up on the dashboard or cross-legged under me.
I come down with some kind of lurgy, delaying our journey and forcing us to crash in hotels and cabins. Our travel budget was based on mostly tent camping, so we’ll have to be extra frugal for the rest of the trip.
On the bright side, the government shut down lifts just as we’re crossing the border into Kentucky – looks like we might make it to the Grand Canyon after all!