Almost There…

So, I’m leaving Sanderson and the weather is looking very not good. I had originally considered the possibility of taking a route home going through two more county seats (specifically Rocksprings and Leakey), but I thought better of it with the storms that seemed immanent. My planned route out of town was closed down because of an accident so I took a different way, taking me back and around to get to Ozona. Here’s the problem: when’s the last time I filled up the car? If you’ve been following my trip, you’ll realize it was back in El Paso, about 335 miles ago… So I’m looking at my route and my remaining driving range and I’m alright because I’ve got about 40 miles worth of gas more than I need to get to Ozona. So I’m driving up and down through canyons and hills. I use power to get up them, but I can’t gain or keep any momentum on the downhills because it’s been raining and all I need is a slide on a downhill to go flying into a canyon. And that’s when I notice I’ve only got 30 miles of extra gas now. But I kept driving…

20 extra miles of gas…

10 extra miles of gas…

Exactly as much gas as I needed…

Less gas than I needed to get to Ozona, the nearest town with fuel…

By the time I got to I-10, the car was no longer even reporting a range. There was nowhere else to go so I took the only real choice I had. I clenched my teeth and white-knuckled it forward to Ozona. I put faith in the fact that car companies that sell cars in the American market put a an extra fuel allowance in because Americans risk pushing past the empty indicator all the time. I flew down I-10 until I had a choice of exits to Ozona. I knew that the farther exit had gas, but the closer exit would be a safer bet. I don’t know the town all that well, but my luck had held this long so I stretched it one more time. I took the near exit, got on the frontage road, and, with luck, managed to coast into a gas station at the edge of town. I’m not a Toyota guy, but I won’t lie: that Sentra did 430 miles on a 13 gallon tank. I filled up and got on down the road, headed toward home.

With a little bit of daylight left and no rain, I decided to grab another one on the way back. I ran across two caches right next to one another on an easy exit so I got off and headed to them. The first was an old church with a little cache on the fence. The second was the nearby cemetery just down the road. Nothing special in and of themselves, but one thing struck me as odd…

You can see from the top photo that there’s quite a bit of room in the cemetery. So why is there a burial right outside it? One day I may do some calling around to find out if there’s something to it, but I probably won’t get around to it. There will always be questions when you’re a stranger passing through.

The storms came and darkened the skies. I had one of the most frightening drives of my life in torrential downpour driving into Dripping Springs. I was drained by the time I hit the Austin city limits and I made it home just in time for dinner. Be it ever so humble, there’s no place like home.

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