Michelle was the adventurous type. She loved to select a location, study it, look up recommendations, cultural norms, and the dialect of the region, and then, plan an unforgettable trip. This included great pit stops to smalltown gas stations, viewing landmarks and peculiarities in the landscape, and singing along to the radio. Every time we hit the road, we knew it was bound to be an amazing time. Whether it was a short ride to the grocery store or a long venture through another state or country, we gelled. Sometimes she brought friends along on our adventures. They were always excited to be there, and I was excited to meet them. No matter where we were and who was with us, I prepared myself for a fantastic time that I knew would collect in my remember forever.
I thought everything was going well. I suppose everyone does when they’re having fun. In the end, the feeling wasn’t mutual.
The Beginning of the End
It all began on one of our more extravagant trips. We were going to Europe. The plane ride there was definitely memorable since I had never been on a plane before. It was an intimidating experience, getting packed up and settled onto the plane. I remember Michelle running around just the day before, hurriedly cramming last minute items into a suitcase and backpack. We even went on a midnight supermarket run to grab extra toothpaste and her favorite snacks for the flight. I could never predict what was to come in the next couple months as we pulled into the gas station on 2nd Street. I wonder if she knew all along. She never did give me a sign… The ride to the airport was just like it always was. We listened to her latest favorites as she occasionally commented on the people or signs she saw out the window.
Landing in Europe, we set off on our adventure right after we got off the plane and dealt with typical post-flight activities. Once all was organized, we hit the road, our target being the coast of Spain. Man was the view amazing, sunset and all. I still remember the cruise and the smooth pavement as we turned to make the curve road. From Spain, we journeyed through France, Italy, and headed up north toward Germany. Every country exposed us to a new experience. A new set of cultural norms with differing roads, traffic—both auto and pedestrian—and varying climates, as we went from the shores of Barcelona to the coniferous forests of Germany. We had a good time; I honestly thought so. Michelle was apparently in a different frame of mind.
With our two months of adventuring slowly coming to an end, she began to get antsy. She usually does this whenever she’s planning a new trip or making a big decision. This nervous frenzy consists of long phone calls, marked-up todo lists, and anxious finger-tapping. I think she must have recalculated her budget at least seven times. I was used to this stress of planning and replanning, but something seemed a bit different.
One day, we took a trip to the outskirts of Germany’s city of Munich. The radio was off, and Michelle’s humming was nowhere to be heard. I went about, performing as I usually do. We pulled into an auto wholesale shop and I was taken aback. Why would we go here? She parked, took my documents, and went inside. I waited until she and the shop owner returned. He looked at me and nodded, and Michelle started toward me to take out her belongings and place them into the car next to me. She patted my side and let out a sigh.
“No worries, your car will have a new owner in no time. In fact, we have someone coming in to see it this afternoon,” the car dealer said looking up at Michelle.
A Fresh Start
That was it. Our adventure was over. I never really found out why Michelle had to sell me —maybe it was money, or maybe she wanted a new travel vehicle. Regardless, the shop owner was right. Rushelle came to see me that afternoon and returned my documents back to my glove compartment. From that time on, I have been cruising the European roadways with my new partner, heading for the next adventure.