We were intending to leave on Thursday at 8:00 AM EDT. Leaving then allows you to get to Chicago just after rush hour and before lunch. As Dan at work says, if you want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans! We still had to clean and take care of all the last minute stuff. And, more neighbors came by to say good-bye. Hands down, people are more important than plans. No exceptions. So, we praised the Lord for the additional time with people and for the changes in plans.
Last minute details always take far longer than you expect... We finally left around 3:00 PM. Just in time to hit Chicago traffic :( We debated leaving on Friday morning instead, but felt that God was telling us to leave on Thursday.
The trip to Grand Marais is about 13 hours in a car—much longer in a truck! We planned to travel separately; Debbie had the I-Pass so she could fly through the tollway. I paid at each booth. It's much easier to travel separately. We both had cell phones, so we could call each other if necessary.
We agreed that if we got too tired, we would stop and sleep. I made it to just north of Eau Claire before giving out around midnight. So, I pulled off and slept for about an hour. Debbie called me from Superior and warned about the detours from the storms there a week earlier. She was planning to keep going.
I couldn't get back to sleep, so I drove for another hour, slept for a bit, drove a bit more, slept some more. Debbie got to Grand Marais OK, just as Joel was getting up for work. He told her it was OK to go in and kiss the kids. Only Rachel woke up, but went right back to sleep. Later that morning, Rachel woke up and told Renee that she had dreamed that Neenah (that's what they call Debbie) had kissed her! When Renee told her it wasn't a dream, she was thrilled!
Meanwhile, I was driving...It was beautiful watching the sun come up over the trees. I love northern Wisconsin; every valley has a lake—sometimes its more swamp than lake! But it is fun to drive. I got to Duluth-Superior just in time for “rush hour” which just meant there were more cars than normal :)
Joel had warned us that there was a detour on 61 because of the storms, so I just took the scenic route from the start. I stopped a few times along the way at pullouts; had breakfast from the cooler at one of them. I wasn't fully believing that it was happening. I finally pulled in to Grand Marais around 10:00 AM.