Here is Will with his two bucks that he shot Sunday afternoon. He's lucky he got to hunt at all. This was one of the most stressful weekends of my life and Paul's, too, I'm sure. Actually, it has been a whole season of stress, to be honest. The house project has stressed me out more than I probably realize - just the continual mess is enough to send me over the edge. But when you add the mess to the money factor and time and the rush to get the house closed in - argh! It's too much!
Well, my nice silver van went down at the end of Oct, as I mentioned before. It is still setting in front of the house where the tow truck delivered it. Paul, of course, has been so busy trying to get the house closed in, that he hasn't gotten to it - hasn't even popped the lid. Then, a couple of weeks later, his truck blew up - literally. He started it and something blew up in the engine. He almost has that repaired. So, we've been down to our old, '91, rickety red van.
We always go out to Council Bluffs for hunting weekend. The guys hunt for two solid days and I spend my time meeting up with old friends and shopping, so it's fun for all of us. So, we weren't sure what we were going to do about getting out to CB this weekend since the red van has been making a continual whining sound for the month we've been driving it. So, as I had written earlier, we had decided we'd have Will buy a car.
And we tried! We went to look at several last week and had finally found one we thought would work. But we couldn't test drive it until Friday. I hated waiting until the last minute like that, but it couldn't be helped. So, Paul arranged to get off work early on Fri. so we could get the new car. Only, we discovered that the brakes didn't work! ARgh! So now what?
Paul finally said that maybe we should get the whine taken care of in the red van before travelling. We stopped at an auto parts store, the guy listened, and said, "You need a new power steering pump." Paul was a little doubtful that that was the problem, but since he didn't know what the problem was, he went with that dx and bought a new pump. We got home at 6pm. And remember, we still had a 2 1/2 hr trip to take, plus the guys needed to be up between 5-6am to hunt.
Three hours later the pump cracks as Paul is trying to put it in. Now we have no vehicles and it's 9 at night. We had already been wondering if the Lord was trying to tell us we weren't supposed to go to CB this weekend! But we managed to get the part needed to fix this. Paul called his supervisor who lives in Des Moines and he ran to the auto parts store. We borrowed our neighbor's truck to go there. I felt so bad having to borrow a vehicle but our neighbors were absolutely insistant. They live a block away and they wouldn't let Paul walk over in the cold. They sent their son to pick him up and then had Paul drop him off on his way out of town. And they wouldn't take any gas money!
Finally at 12:30 in the morning, Paul has the power steering pump in. And then he discovers that the van is still whining. He quickly finds the part that is making the noise. He just spent 6+ hours fixing something that didn't need to be fixed! Double ARGH! So, dead to the world, we take off. I drive because I'd gotten a little bit of nap while they worked on the van.
The drive is uneventful until I am exiting the interstate in Council Bluffs. I notice that the van seems to shift on its own, but figured I am imagining things since I am so tired and have just spent the last 2 hours listening to George Norrie talking about alien spaceship landings and such. The van starts making a louder than normal whine, so loud that everyone wakes up. We get to the highway below Paul's parents' driveway and the van dies. It won't shift at all. The transmission went out! A sheriff comes by and drives Paul up the driveway and Paul's dad comes and hooks the van to his pickup and we get pulled up.
At 5am, Paul and I fall into bed, just stunned. What are we supposed to do now? We are more than two hours from home and have no way of returning home. We prayed together, asking for wisdom. That's all we could do. Why is this happening?
The weekend actually turns out pretty good. Will gets his deer and I still got to go shopping with Kathy, which was wonderful! We drive his parents' van back to Swan with plans to have George and Dorothy come out sometime this week in their truck with our dead deer. And then they can drive back their van. A few weeks ago a gentleman at church had commented to Paul that if we needed an extra vehicle, he had one we could sure borrow. So Paul called him and he and his wife are bringing it out to our place (a full 40 min away from their house) today. And then Paul plans to get our silver van going hopefully even this week.
This is all so rotten, but yet, it's just life, you know? Yes, it's an inconvenience to have all this happening at once, and as my sister-in-law commented today, it's an infringement on my comfort level. But yet, I can't complain. I don't have a terminally ill child, my husband is employed, we have a house, I don't have to fear the Muslims in the next village coming to rape, murder, and terrorize my family some night - and so on. Life is not bad at all for me. It's terribly frustrating at the moment, but it's not bad!
We'll get through this and someday, maybe even laugh about it (although I'm hard pressed to imagine that reality right now). In the meantime, prayers would be appreciated 1) To know what to do about our ruined red van. We put it on Craig's List and got numerous hits already, so apparently, we can plan on collecting a few hundred for junking it 2) That Paul can get the silver van going 3) That we won't wreck the loaner vehicle that's been so graciously provided 4) That we'll know what to do about purchasing a car for Will 5) That our attitudes would remain right and that others could see Christ in us in the midst of this irritating time.