- Why We Left Memphis
So, we’re moving. Again. Which isn’t a bad thing! Many exciting adventures await when you move. Such as this little adventure (she wrote, sarcastically), which we had in Memphis, Tennessee 6 years ago during our move to Indiana. Though I love Memphis, Aaron couldn’t wait to leave that town. This is a repost. Have another free laugh, reading friends.
As I was sitting in a cafe’ this morning, staring out the window at a car nearly clipping the fender of another car, I was reminded that my family has been living here in Indy for 4 years. You’ll understand the connection in a moment. To commemorate this anniversary, I will share the story of a um… remarkable? night during our journey to Indy. It’s called Memphis, and I will write it in third person for flair.
Once upon a time, there was a very kind, usually cool-headed hottie of a worship pastor/techy husband named Aaron who—upon receiving a job offer in Indy—forewent a moving van and instead rented a giant U-Haul truck big enough for a house full of stuff. One really should have a special license to drive those trucks, especially with one’s plan to tow his car on a swiveling car hitch behind the truck. Lord, bless the makers of that swivel hitch. Just bless them and forgive them for they know not what they’ve done.
Aaron’s wife Jill and their adorable toddling boy were to travel in Jill’s car. The morning they were to leave it was 103 degrees in the shade in their beloved Austin, Texas. They cried for different reasons and hugged and promised to write long letters to all of their friends, and then set off on the first leg of their adventure. How romantic! How exciting! Modern-day pioneers! To Indiana or bust!
Daddy lets son drive for a while despite the broken heel. Excellent parents, these Tucker’s.
Adjustin’ the air before hittin’ the road.
The drive was fine until 10pm when the two adults both saw double from fatigue and decided to park their lives in Memphis for the night. Aaron was particularly tired as his driver seat had been bouncing him like a grandpa’s knee the entire trip. Jill called Aaron to see where he wanted to lodge.
“I don’t care. First hotel we see,” he said.
“Why have you been driving so slowly?” she asked.
“This thing won’t go past 60.”
“What’s that sound?” she asked. So many questions, he thought.
“The horn. I honked at a guy a while ago and it won’t stop blaring.”
“Let’s stop in Memphis. It’s just up the road.”
Ah, Memphis. No wonder Priscilla and Elvis loved that place. Or did they [insert Twilight Zone music]?
Traffic lights and Jill’s lead foot separated them in downtown Memphis at 10pm on a Friday night, but a few minutes later, Jill faintly heard what sounded like a blaring truck horn and a cussing husband in the distance. She called him again and encouraged him to park on a side street to wait for her.
The street he chose was darling. Darling! It was lined with trees and twinkle lights and parked cars and brownstones. It was also one-way and dead-ended at the electric trolley tracks. With live electrical wires above the tracks. I’ll get back to the trolley tracks.
Jill tried to help her unraveling husband reverse the U-Haul replete with swivel tow out of the dark one-way street. That tow swiveled so wonderfully! It swiveled his car inches away from so many parked cars that Aaron called off the operation. He was no longer sane. His pupils flicked left to right to left and he smiled softly. Was he mumbling? Jill wasn’t sure. The horn still blared, you see.
Here they are on a happier day. Don’t bother going to jilltucker.net.
Here they are again, happier still. So happy. Why are they sitting so stiffly? Because they are so happy. Their happiness transcends body language.
Back to the story. Jill called 911 and explained the situation to the dispatcher lady, who laughed. She asked Jill to hold on, covered the mouthpiece and told another dispatcher lady, who also laughed. This made Jill and the toddler laugh, but not Aaron. In a few minutes though, the police dramatically swarmed the scene, as only the police can do. Firetruck and ambulance, even.
After a time, the specialists also called off the operation. The only way out of this predicament, was to shut down the entire trolley system in the entire city to let Aaron drive down the tracks. They made calls. They talked to their people. Within a few minutes, Aaron and Jill and the toddler drove down tracks without being electrocuted by live wires or smashed by an oncoming trolley.
Aaron could not not stay in Memphis for the night. He just couldn’t. After breaking open the steering wheel and tearing the horn wires out of the console, he lead Jill and the toddler to a roadside place in a nondescript town a few miles outside of town. And they all slept happily ever after. –The End.