Today was the first full day of training and the day I had to return the truck.
Let’s talk about that truck, shall we?
When I first registered for this leadership training in Pittsburg, the issue of how to get there was one that was far off and would certainly be resolved by August. And it was. Just not the way I thought.
The vehicle situation in our family is large van and small manual car. I don’t drive stick. My family fits in and needs the van.
After exploring several travel options, renting a car one way and being picked up from the conference seemed the best choice. My husband made the reservation, and we went to claim the car Saturday morning.
Have I got a deal for you, if you are willing to drive a truck, that is.
Seeing as how I drive an older model van, driving a truck didn’t scare me off. I was game. It needed to be moved off of the lot. I could do that. It also became another thing for the kids to fight over as I drove them around Saturday and Sunday morning.
I wanted to sit in the front middle!
For just the cost of the rental, no drop fee, I was on my way to Pittsburg.
It was a great theory.
I am not a relaxed driver. Driving on road trips isn’t life-giving to me. Driving a rental truck on the Pennsylvania Turnpike with its 55mph work zones and concrete barriers along the shoulder, narrowing the passage even further, was life-sucking and tension-inducing.
The tunnel that I used to beg my parents to wake me for on those overnight road trips to Michigan was daunting, as semis surrounded me, and I white knuckled the steering wheel. I tried not to be swayed by the power of suggestion, remembering my mom’s stories of tunnel-driving terror (and lug nuts coming loose!).
I can DO this.
I don’t like driving in unfamiliar territory, so driving an unfamiliar truck into an unfamiliar city was a growing experience.
I was grateful for small graces like pull-through parking spaces and valet parking at the hotel.
Phase one complete (arrival), it was only a matter of waiting until morning to get to phase two (rental return). I was worried about how the process would go. The fact that I was driving to a city with car rental returns on the 5th floor of parking garages had not been on my radar when I snatched up my steal of a deal.
I called to confirm the location of the rental agency, a mere twelve blocks away, and arranged to return the truck. Following the signs, I took my ticket and entered the garage, heading to the fifth floor.
Onward and upward. Slow and steady. It looks like this won’t work, but I have been given full assurance that it will. Keep going.
As I journeyed upward, I saw other trucks and vans of similar size to mine safely tucked into their parking spaces. I knew in my head this would work, but my heart wasn’t feeling it. My nerves were shot. I was at the end of my rope, and kept reminding myself to trust the process.
Those who knew better than I and who had gone before assured me it would be okay. That is what kept me going when I wanted to quit, get out of the truck, and scream ENOUGH!
And then I was there. I reached the 5th floor where there was plenty of space to pull in and ride the elevator down to the checkout desk. After getting the all clear from the agent, I stepped out of the building and took a deep breath.
Where do YOU need to trust the process today? Bet ya didn’t see that one coming.
Goodbye, Late-model Truck! Thank you for getting me to Pittsburg. You will be missed.