June 19th, 2004

Junkyard Mup

Well, my trip went almost without incident.


Somewhere slightly north of Chicago, I was talking to my friend Josh on my cell phone, and I said to him, “Why am I seeing a sign that says ‘Freeway ends, traffic light ahead’?” He gets on Mapquest or something similar and tells me that 41 and 94 split, and I got on the wrong one.

I’ve made this trip dozens of times and never done this. Kids, let this be a warning to you: talking on the cell phone while driving is a bad idea.

Josh proceeded to help me get back to the Interstate, and a half hour later, I was headed north on 94. In the process, though, I had to pay two tolls – one to get off the interstate because I could only go south, and then one to get back on the interstate headed north. Problem is, I didn’t have any change at all. The little sign said “If you don’t have correct change, call this number within four days.” So I’ve got to call that number and I’ll probably have to mail them a quarter, which will cost 37 cents to mail…

So with that half hour lost and the two traffic jams in Chicago (on a Thursday night!!!), I got to my parents’ house at 1:00 a.m. Not too bad.

I woke up at 9:00, got ready, then headed to Madison with my dad to go to the junkyard to get parts for my van and my brother’s car.

Those of you who are unfamiliar with junkyards might need some explanation here. A junkyard is basically a cemetary for cars, but a cemetary where people are able to come and pick the parts they like off the bodies. There are rows and rows of cars in various states of disrepair. Most of them have ended up there because they were in accidents or abandoned by the side of the road. If you need a mirror, a tire, a fan, or a front seat, a junkyard is a good place to get one – if you don’t mind the work involved in getting it.

See, you’ve got to get the part(s) off the car yourself, so you have to haul tools around. Then you have to haul the parts around. And did I mention this is all outside? A Mup outside is a Mup not in his natural habitat – a Mup outside amongst cars doubly so.

I actually have a bit of a sunburn now, even though it rained off and on for the (approximately) five hours we were there.

Then we went to Dad’s place of work to put the new-to-us tires on the rims, and then came home to have Mom’s birthday dinner.

Afterwards we played a game of Scrabble, and now I’m typing. Pretty exciting, yes?

Tomorrow there’s a wedding to go to, and then a baseball game.

I suspect there will be more sunburn.

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