Whitesburg KY

Trip to mountains ends in accident

Hello everyone!

I have a new ailment as I sit down to write this column, known as T.B. No, not my lungs, better known as tired butt!

As I start my day there’s a chill in the air this morning. I am tempted to turn my heat up, but it is supposed to be a beautiful day.

Once again I let my heart and my feet take over for my brain as Friday morning I made up my mind to head for the mountains that I still call home in my heart and soul.

I had gone to my primary care doctor, and my blood pressure is still a little elevated. I told Dr. Wong I was toying with the idea of heading for the mountains. He knows where Jackson is since his mother is from there, and he asked if I thought I was up to it.

He asked if I was going alone, and I said yes, as I really didn’t mind traveling alone, so he told me to take it easy and enjoy myself.

I couldn’t sleep Thursday night so of course Friday morning I was dragging. I couldn’t find some things I wanted to take. I left here at 9:30 a.m., and I pulled into Whitesburg Motel at 2 p.m.

The drive was beautiful and even though the redbuds were fading, God must have known how much this trip meant to me as He and Mother Nature let them linger so I could still see the beautiful sight.

The dogwoods were so beautiful too. When I got on Mountain Parkway I could see the luscious green mountains looming in my vision, and the white dogwoods and along the side of the road the redbuds.

There was bit of sadness as the thought of other trips came rolling through my mind.

My brother Jerry and his wife once spent three weeks with us, and when we got on Mountain Parkway, Jerry rolled the window down, and said, “Oh, I can almost smell home!”

We all started laughing. Jerry loved to come to visit for three weeks, and sometimes a month was a little too much for him to be away.

Now there’s something about the one particular stretch of Mountain Parkway that is absolutely breathtaking.

I stopped at Natural Bridge exit for a short rest, then on my way again.

I never stopped any more until I got to Parkway Restaurant. I wanted to order a butterscotch pie to pick up Sunday for my son-in-law Scott Nottingham.

While talking to the sweet person, I found out an old friend, Annabelle Wright, was in the hospital. After I checked in the motel I decided to go to the hospital.

I did call just before I got into Whitesburg and Annabelle had been released, so I decided to stop by The Mountain Eagle to wish Pam a belated happy birthday. It was so good to see her.

I finally met Ben Gish and he sure is tall, and a very nice person.

It was such a perfect day. I knew I should go to the motel to rest, but still I wanted to see so much.

I drove past Green Acres Cemetery, but I was afraid to try to walk down the hillside or up to Jerry’s grave by myself as I am still a little unsteady on my feet.

I took a drive to Golden Apple to check on green beans to bring back to Betty Ison, as she wanted some fresh half runners.

Southern Ohio

After I made the trip, with the help of the owner of Golden Apple, we decided it was best to wait until Sunday morning for me to pick them up.

I had plans to pick Ricky Caudill up Saturday morning and we were going to Hillbilly Days in Pikeville.

Well, the rest of this column goes to show you how quick plans can change!

I called Ricky to tell him I had decided to make the trip, and he asked where I was. I replied I was in Whitesburg, so he asked why I didn’t come on down as his sister Marcia and Mike were there.

As I started down Smoot Creek, it started raining so hard I could hardly see to drive. I had no cell phone service, so I couldn’t call to say I changed my mind. Finally the rain stopped and I was within spitting distance of the turn-off to Ricky’s house and my plans took a drastic change.

Luckily I was driving like a turtle going around a sharp curve and with the pavement wet along with loose gravel, my car started sliding. I remember thinking, God I am going to roll!

Let me say something, if there’s anyone reading this column that doesn’t believe in our Almighty Savior, there is a God and He took that steering wheel.

Somehow the car had the right two wheels on the pavement but the car was leaning badly. I don’t remember reaching for my purse, and I barely remember putting it in park, shutting the car off, and removing my keys. I know as I opened the door it swung so hard it took me two or three times to try to close the door, but I didn’t have the strength so it never really shut all the way.

I have no recollection how I climbed up the bank in front of the car. After I got on the blacktop, I was shaking so badly I knew I couldn’t walk up the mountain to Ricky’s house. I had no cell phone service and I wasn’t hurt, but I felt confused in my thinking.

Finally I walked back to a house where I had seen someone sitting on the porch, and I asked if he could call a wrecker for me.

I assume he got his wife to come to the porch, and I told her what I needed and that I had no cell phone service. She tried to call someone named Collins, but he didn’t answer his phone.

I asked her if she knew Ricky Caudill, and if she would call him to tell him I was over the hill. In less than 10 minutes Ricky, Mike and Marcia were there to my rescue.

I started shaking again and cried like a baby. Mike and Marcia both have cell phones so they both were calling to try to get hold a towing service. Finally Mike got hold of someone out of Hazard. Ricky had Marcia and I go to his house, and I left my insurance card and keys.

Once again it came a furious downpour, and it was like Heaven opened up and there was no let up for quite some time, plus the temperature dropped.

My jacket was in the car along with my sweatshirt. Marcia got one of Ricky’s sweatshirts, and I took a quilt of the foot of his bed so we could wrap up while we sat on the swing on the porch.

Ricky came to get him some long pants and jacket as he was cold.

It took about three hours for the tow truck to get to my car. I wasn’t down there, but the man must have really known what he was doing because he never damaged the car while pulling it out, and I hadn’t done any damage while I decided parking it like that.

Ricky and Mike said the man checked to see if I had damaged the oil pan, transmission, and everything else .

Marcia and I were still on the swing when Mike came to the house alone. I heard Marcia say more to herself, “Oh my God, I wonder how bad it is?”

As I waited for Mike to come on the porch, I knew he was going to say it was damaged, but in a few seconds, my little red car appeared. Ricky was driving it, with his friend riding Ricky’s four-wheeler behind my car.

I rose up from the swing, but didn’t say anything. I thought my butt was going to hit the porch. Once again I started crying uncontrollably.

Poor Mike held me like a baby and let me bawl. He and Marcia must have thought I was the biggest baby they’d ever seen.

I couldn’t stop shaking, so they wouldn’t let me drive back to the motel by myself. Ricky drove my car and Mike and Marcia followed. It was midnight before I quit shaking and finally fell asleep.

We had plans for me to pick Ricky up at 9:00 Saturday morning, but it was a cold damp day and I was in no condition to go anywhere.

I really dreaded to drive back up that road, but I made myself go. We decided not to go to Hillbilly Days, but instead we went to a few flea markets, and then stopped by some antique shops.

Berma Matthews was at one, and I really enjoyed seeing her. We then we stopped at Libby’s and I enjoyed spending some time with her, and even her husband stopped in on his way to someplace else.

Then Ricky and went to Marcia and Mike’s, where she cooked the most delicious looking meal, and I had yogurt. I wanted a taste of green beans so badly, and her mashed potatoes.

Ricky was my personal chauffeur, but I was getting very tired. We decided to go back to his place to drop him off, and I headed back to the motel.

I knew I was exhausted, yet I couldn’t get to sleep. There was nothing on television, so I kept changing channels.

I found something on the Government Channel about Carcassonne square dancing at the community center with a much younger looking Lee Sexton. I missed the first part.

Sunday morning I was awake at my usual time, 5 a.m., and I turned the television on. I found the Government Station again and this time it was Whitesburg Police Department in 1958, then it was Castle in Carcassonne, the program that I had seen half of.

I never moved till it was finished.

Finally I got my day started. I drove back to Golden Apple to pick up half runner green beans, stopped by Food City to get Betty some liver cheese as you can not get it here, plus I got my daughter Angie some spiced luncheon meat.

I stopped at Parkway Restaurant and picked up the butterscotch pie, stopped at Hardees’s, and picked up Angie and my little sidekick Bennie Wiederhold mushroom and Swiss burgers.

When I stopped in Jackson to pick up a couple of local newspapers for my doctor’s mother, I got very sick since I ate oatmeal for breakfast.

I never stopped until I got to my daughter’s to drop off the pie at 2:45 p.m., then drove to Angie’s to drop off her care package, then to Doyle and Betty’s in Aurora and by the time I got home it was 6:30 p.m.

Ricky and Marcia sent me home with a trunk filled with flowers and trees. I had taken Ricky a few poppies and some irises that were starting to bloom.

So the trip was worth it, even considering everything that happened. It was wonderful being back home.

I wish it hadn’t been so cold, and I wish I hadn’t gone through the stress and put Ricky, Mike, and Marcia through this ordeal.

I will always be grateful they were there for me.

What did Christine Fields write in her column, that no one cared enough to help? Maybe there are people who wouldn’t remodel someone’s house, do plumbing etc., but I know three people that have hearts of gold, and I am thankful to call them friends.

I will close by saying thank You, God for Your blessings on me.

Until next time.

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