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Thursday, June 28, 2007


We left Amarillo about 10:30 Tuesday, quickly discovered Leanna had left her purse in her office, stopped at the state tourist place to get maps of Dallas and waited while our partner brought it to us.
Smooth sailing for the next four hours, then we ran into an area where heavy rains on Monday and Tuesday had flooded the highway. State police and sheriffs had traffic backed up for miles, allowing one car at a time to try to get through an area 100 yards across and ten inches deep. Wreckers were pulling out stalled cars. Then we came upon a second such area, and a third. We spent over an hour going about 10 miles through the previously-unknown Texas Puddle District. This dumped us into Fort Worth at rush hour, made worse by a blinding rain storm which had traffic at a standstill. It took us almost two hours to cover a distance I have previously driveni n 30 minutes. We finally stopped at a restaurant a few minutes from the hotel, had a nice dinner, walked through the adajcent mall, and went on to the hotel. While at the mall, I decided to call the office (8:30 at night) just to say hello, only to learn that the printer and die cutter had been trying to contact me for hours (bad cell phone reception in thunderstorms) regarding another undiscovered problem with the die cutting job. A quick call to the home of the broker told the tale; the sheets were a half inch too small to go through the equipment that would have done the entire job in two hours. But they had a backup plan.

Wednesday morning, we got up, packed up, and went over to the printer. After a tour of the plant, we drove almost an hour across Dallas to a competing printer who had other kinds of equipment and could do the job, but it would take 3-4 days. Fortunately, we did not need the entire print run, just enough of it to get to Origins, which meant die-cutting about 1/3 of about half of the sheets. We left to go to the Zoo, but that plan got rained out, so we tried to go shopping, and couldn't get to the mall we wanted to go to because flooding had closed some roads. We finally went back to the die cutter and napped on their sofa. At 5pm, the required quantity was in the car and we left, right smal into rush hour, and right smack into another thunderstorm. Two hours later, we had covered 20 miles of interstate highway and gave up, getting out at an exit and walking into a restaurant (drenched from the 30 feet we had to run from car to door). We had a nice dinner and finally started on home, but heavy rains had traffic at a crawl. It took another hour to make it the last 20 miles out of Dallas-Fort Worth. Then it was smooth sailing. Except it wasn't. Constant rain kept the top speed down, and it was dark enough Leanna could not legally drive (bad night vision). I had been driving all day (and most of the day before). I was sleepy and sore. We made it home at 1:30am, safely. I had to drive the whole way but we took lots of stops for me to wash my face, drink and eat, and walk around.

Thursday (this morning) we turned in the leased vehicle after unloading the counters. Now we just have to do a week of getting ready for Origins in 4 days.