1) You turn your roadtrip into an airtrip.
Here’s our story:
We arrived at our family friend’s just outside of Jacksonville, Florida on a Thursday night with no problems. Our intention was to stay for the weekend, so we parked our car. On Sunday afternoon, we took the car to get the oil changed. We started hearing sputtering noises and, eventually, our car wouldn’t accelerate when we floored the pedal. Because we couldn’t go more than 10mph, we decided to take it into the shop the next morning to see what was happening.
Next thing we knew, we were faced with a $3,000 price tag to fix our catalytic converters (which were completely clogged), replace the O2 sensors (which probably caused the cat converters to clog) as well as a couple other minor things. Seeing as our vehicle was already 10 years old with nearly 320,000km on it, we decided not to fix it. Another factor that came into play is that we’re planning on moving abroad in early 2015, thus we’d be parking our car anyways.
So we decided to get rid of it.
At least we made it to Northern Florida… *nearly* as far away from Edmonton as we could get!
The service we received at Auto Spot Tire Pros was beyond phenomenal. Not only did they let us keep the car in their shop for a few days, but one of the guys even helped us find someone to sell it to by using his personal network!
Now, being carless on a roadtrip doesn’t bode too well. We spent a few days figuring out what to do, and decided the most cost effective thing would be to fly due west and join up with my parents, who were on their own three month road trip in the West. We’ll be back one day to finish our road trip… I was really looking forward to visiting more friends and seeing Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, and New Mexico!
Our adventure wasn’t *completely* lost. Flights are cheap in the US, so for a few hundred dollars, we continued our adventure!
Don’t ask me how much stuff we had to throw away in order to make everything fit into one piece of checked luggage between the two of us >:(
2) Be thankful.
- We broke down in the best possible place we could. Any other big city and we would have had troubles.
- We did not break down in the middle of an interstate nor during rush hour.
- Our family friend was extremely gracious and caring with no set plans for the extra week we needed to stay.
- We had spare money to purchase flights and rent a car.
- Graham’s family in Arizona took us in.
- My family was within one week of meeting us in the west.
- We could continue onto Miami and Key West with our time that now became “flexible” (originally we decided to skip it).
- We were able to roadtrip on our own for 8 full weeks – half of our planned trip.
- We had a cute dog keeping us company during the days:
3) Find comfort in God’s plan, no matter the circumstances.
I recently finished reading Zen and the Art of Happiness, and although the book is “spiritual” in mentality, I applied everything to how God is working in my life. I also related everything to Biblical teachings. Here are a couple things I picked up:
“Everything that happens to me is the best possible thing that can happen to me.” In other words, God has everything under control. This can be found in:
- Psalm 138:8 – The Lord will work out his plans for my life — for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever.
- Romans 8:28 – And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
- Proverbs 16:9 – We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.
“Whatever you’re going through will turn out to your advantage, even if you don’t yet see how that’s possible.” Biblically, this is said in:
- Proverbs 19:21 – You can make many plans, but the Lord’s purpose will prevail.
- Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
- Psalm 37:5 – Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him, and he will help you.
Aren’t all these comforting thoughts?
There’s a great peace knowing that God protects us (Isaiah 41:10 – Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.). Perhaps Graham and I were awaiting a terrible car accident, or some other tragic event, and God carefully crafted our car breakdown to be as gentle as it could be. Or maybe God wanted us to reach out to someone specific who we never would have encountered otherwise. I can speculate (and sometimes I want to), but I’d rather just trust in Him completely. In fact, that’s what He asks of us: Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. (Proverbs 3:5-6).
One final thought:
“A situation becomes favourable when one adapts to it.” Rely on the Lord and you’ll find peace.
- Philippians 4:11-13 – Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.