Tuesday, June 5, 2012

On The Road--Doc Encounters Poop, Pool and a Physician


  Okay, admit it, I had you at "poop". Who can resist a title like that--at least that is what I'm hoping. :-) But lest you get your hopes up, no, the poop was not in the pool.. Let's move on.

     I'm excited that so many of you are faithfully following Doc and our family on our blog journey. But in case you are just joining us, you can read a recap of the series up to this point.
1. Meet Doc,
2. Doc Goes to the Jenkins Family Reunion
3. Doc Goes to Church
4. Doc Visits the Desert

    Having shaken the sand from sandals, or rather in this case, our "flip flops", we left the lovely, white hills of Monahans State Park and headed west again. Within a few hours we zoomed through El Paso and left our home state behind. Actually it was hard to tell we'd ever left at all since New Mexico is obviously a continuation of the scrub-brush plains of Texas.
    We are making good time and by mid-afternoon we are slowing to enter a border checkpoint in Arizona. Since we've never been through anything like this before, we find it pretty cool. Darell rolls down his window and the burly border patrol officer peers int our car, makes eye contact with both of us and asks if everyone in our car  is American citizens.We nod and say yes. He waves us on.
    From the backseat, we hear a small voice. I reach back and shove the bag of Reeses Pieces  to the side and shift the package of jalapeno beef  jerky off of Doc's face. He says we lied to the border patrol guy. Lied? When we ask what he's talking about, he tells us to look on the bottom of his boot. I turn him upside down and focus on the bottom of the little guy's lone, still-attached foot. A small label reads: "Made in China". Doc insists that is where he was "born" so that makes him a . . .  what . . . a Chinese gnome citizen???? We're not sure about all of his heritage questions, but we assure him that his paper work is in order. It had to be, to pass customs when he moved to his new home in Garden Ridge, Grapevine, Texas, USA!
      About an hour over the Arizona border, we are following the RV and Darell, Doc, and I notice some sticky residue attaching itself to our windshield. Darell washes it off and comments on the unusual amount of "bug juice" . Within a few minutes the windshield is covered with the gunky residue again and we click on the windshield washer once more. Darell suggest it's coming from the RV's air conditioning, but we've been following The RV for two days and not had any problems. Just then I point out a large spray of fluid coming from underneath the RV. Every bit of the misty cloud seems drawn to our windshield as if pulled by a magnet. While Darell washes the windshield a third time I call Diana and within minutes all of us have pulled off to a deserted section of road. Russell crawls under the RV and of course Doc thinks he needs to help.
Doc and Russell  on poop patrol.

    I put a cup under the dripping liquid and just as I announce that the water is grossly brown, Russell announces there is a large crack in the black water tank. YUCK!!!! In case you are not an RV person, the black water tank is pretty self-descriptive--it hold all the pee and poop from the RV's bathroom. So . . . .
Want to guess what was landing on our windshield?  Yep, you're right. The Jenkins vacation curse just took a uncharted trip into the toilet.
     Since we are only a few hours from our destination of Mesa Arizona, we decide to chance it. But there is one change--we are leading now, and I think you know why. . .

    The sun has set by the time we make it to Darell's brother's house. We are greeted warmly by Dell and his lovely wife, Pat. To us it feels like 10:30 PM Texas time, but we've lost two hours and Dell and Pat serve us dinner at 8:30 PM  Arizona time. Pat is a wonderful hostess and a fantastic cook. Her tostadas and homemade salsa is awesome and we can't get enough. Pat's grandson, James Patrick also helps serve the meal and we feel like very honored guests. After a short visit, Pat directs us to our prepared beds and we tumble into them, totally exhausted.
     The next day Russell and Diana spent a great deal of the morning at the RV stores and find the tank has to be special ordered. In the meantime, they are directed to some tape to hold the crack together--the cost is only $70. For tape????? The rest of the morning and early afternoon, we catch up on laundry, go swimming and visit with Dell and his two dogs, Keo and Kacy.
Did you know dogs can fly? Kacy can.
 Now these dogs are as smart as they come and serve as adorable, non-stop entertainment for us.Witnessing the dogs' amazing devotion to Dell and their almost human-like perception of Dell's vocabulary is fascinating to me. But then again, Dell has most everyone he meets hanging onto his every word. He is a born storyteller and comedian and we are blessed to have him and Pat in our family. Dell is recovering from heart problems faced earlier this year, but he looks great and  we praise God for the strong recovery and for Pat's part in it.  
     Doc whispers he wants to swim and play with the cute dogs. (Seems he's gotten a bit braver since he met Tammie's dog, Romo.) But as his physician, I remind him that he is scheduled to undergo a leg re-attachment at 1:00 PM.  He relents and I perform the pool-side surgery.
Doc in surgery with Physician Ava.

 Within a few minutes on the recovery towel, he is good as new. You can see for yourself there's no stopping that little dare-devil.

Doc is pretty good at hide-and-seek with the dogs.

Writer's Reflections:
      Families are our safe harbors from the rough seas of this life.There's nothing like family. I can say it a million times, but those of us who are blessed to be in a strong family know the feeling is beyond description. God, in his infinite wisdom designed it that way and knew we would need that special support that only family members can offer.
    Granted, some family units are scattered and dysfunctional and for those people there seems to be a longing for inclusion that can't be filled.They are on a constant search to belong to something or someone and gravitate toward those that have those strong family ties. I see it in my husband's family and now in our own. Our children's friends gather often in the safe harbor of our home and become part of our family unit.
     This is the way it should be in the family of Christ. Entwining our lives with our heavenly Father and strengthening our family bonds with Him first, is the key. Then we can be that shining light that draws the lost to safety and brings them into God's family.
       Just reach up before reaching out. Then, whatever you do--Don't let go.

Coming Up: Doc Goes to the Grand Canyon.



  1. Awww, mom! This is so cute! I love what you have to say about God and family in your conclusion. You know I'm such a sucker for the "light" analogy when it comes to God. It's just the perfect description of how we are meant to be our whole life long!

    1. Thanks Nat,it's a great reminder for myself too.

  2. Fun story, Ava! You had me giggling tonight. :) I'm from a strong family and I'm blessed by every person in it - it's un indescribable feeling.

    1. Gabrielle,
      Nothing can touch that feeling of family. Thanks for your comment.

  3. LOL...so funny! So is this the kind of thing you mean when you say stuff always happens on your vacations? Spilling poop across America???? lololol

    I'g glad Doc's surgery went well.

    1. Sherrinda,
      Doc's surgery was only a 24-hour success, I'm sad to say, but that's coming in the next post. Now you see what I mean--we always have "interesting" vacations. Thanks for your comments.

  4. Love the series. Love the writing.

    Go, Doc, GO!

    1. Matt,
      I'm so honored by your comments, cause I know how talented of a writer you are. Appreciate you taking the time to stop by.Glad to know I'm on the right track.


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