Welcome back to my page! If you enjoyed part 1 of this story, you are in for a treat as today I’m sharing part 2 of our vacation adventure.
Our story begins on the day after we arrived at our campsite in KY. In the morning we drove to Hopkinsville, KY for the total solar eclipse. The eclipse itself was indescribable and I’m SO glad we were there. Honestly, the experience was right up there with witnessing a live birth. But in person. (I’ve never seen a live birth in person but I imagine it has similar awestruck feelings.)
Now Hopkinsville (or Hville as I’ll be referring to it in shorthand) is a relatively small town in the Midwest. With a population of only around 30K, hosting eclipsers was going to be a daunting task. I’m not sure of the exact number of people who came to Hville to see the eclipse, but I would venture to guess at least half of the total original population based on the traffic we had getting out of the city. Of course, this estimate is conservative depending on who you talk to.
Speaking of the traffic, It was the worst I’ve ever been in. Which sounds dramatic, but let me explain further.
This traffic was most of the state’s visitors leaving at once FROM THE SAME DIRECTION. Also, Hville is situated along mostly country roads so the option of pulling over for a pit stop at a gas station was NOT an option.
But we didn’t think it’d be a big deal. We figured we’d be out of Hville soon and we’d be able to do a pit stop at a gas station or convenience store.
NOPE. We were wrong. Normally it takes a little over an hour to get from Hville to Evansville, IN on the border.
It took us 7.5.
7.5 HOURS in SLOOOOOWWWW *ss moving traffic. On mostly country roads, and the roads that weren’t isolated in the country had NOWHERE to pull off and use the restroom.
Chad suddenly had to go.
In all honesty, I had started to get an inkling that I had to go about an hour or so before he did, but I figured that we’d DEFINITELY find a place in the next few miles.
Which turned into more miles.
Which turned into more miles.
And the ENTIRE time we were in slow *ss moving traffic that NEVER sped up beyond 5. MILES. PER. HOUR.
And about two hours in, it finally happened. Chad couldn’t hold it any longer. So we began trying to figure out what to do. Now I already had to go but let’s just say that ship had uh, sailed, and had circled the harbor at least once. So really the priority was Chad.
At more than one point we contemplated pulling into a random person’s driveway and asking if we could use their bathroom. Honestly, I can’t believe Hville didn’t see this coming and put random Port-a-Pottys along roads, spaced out over several miles. (Note to Terre Haute in 2024: This needs to happen).
But we (and by “we” I mean Chad and since he was driving he really had the final say so as to whether something was “not appropriate”) decided that it wasn’t a good idea to stop into someone’s driveway and ask if we could use the bathroom. Even to test how true their own state license plates used to be (“Kentucky: We ARE That Friendly”).
But it got to the point where I’m pretty sure Chad contemplated just that if only for a moment. Instead he said, “OK, this is what we are going to do.” and picked up a large plastic cup (like those cups you can get at 7-11 for those Slurpees you buy that are as tall as 5 chickens standing on top of each other) from the driver’s side door from a previous roadside stop.
While keeping one hand on the wheel, we were still moving, he takes his other hand and leans his seat back so he had more room (and other cars couldn’t see), unzipped his pants (we were stopped for a moment but were moving again-but no more than 5mph), angled the cup and let loose.
We both prayed to Jesus that he wouldn’t overflow the cup and every second the flow didn’t stop we panicked that we were about to be out in the middle of nowhere covered in pee. Imagine the conversation……..
(Officer: Do you know why I pulled you over?
Us: We were undressing in stopped traffic with the windows open.
Officer: That’s right and I’ll be charging you with indecent exposure, can you step out of the car, please?
**Chad steps out of the car to help me out**
Officer: Sir, what is that on your pants?
Us: Well you see officer, we really had to pee, but as you know there is nowhere to pull off to do it, so we had this cup and I really had to go and………
Officer: **looks extremely flustered** Ga….My bad. You folks have a nice day!)
Thankfully the stream stopped literally millimeters from the top. Then Chad handed me the cup as I’m rolling with laughter in the passenger seat. “Here,” he said. Now, I’ve never been handed a cup of pee as tall as a 5 chicken Slurpee, so I didn’t know what to do. I just took it and stared at it for a moment before gingerly reaching for the window-putter-downer in an attempt to dispose of it out the window (Shout out to the car behind us, I’m sorry!?). “NO! Don’t do that.” Chad panickly announced. “Just open the door and pour it out.”
Which I guess is definitely more discreet. So I carefully cracked the door open (yes, we were still moving but no more than 5 mph), and slowly poured the mammoth cup of pee out on this now defiled road. This task is immensely more difficult when one is laughing hysterically at what we had become in this moment.
8 hours later we stumbled into our house, thankful we had survived such a crazy adventure.
So the takeaway from this story is three-fold:
1. Keeping a cup in the car as tall as 5 chickens standing on top of each other is a pretty great idea in case of emergency.
2. You’ve never truly appreciated a car with good leg room until you are in a similar situation.
3. In hindsight, that lady who wore astronaut diapers to drive across the country doesn’t seem so crazy after all.