After I posted last Wednesday, I received word that my dad's half sister, Betty, had died. Her husband, John, died last fall. Even though she had been sick for several months, her death came as an unexpected shock to all of us. My cousins, Rhonda, Robert, and Leon, have now lost both their father and mother in less than a year. If that isn't a tough thing to deal with, I don't know what is. :-(
Friday, hubby and I made the long drive to southern Illinois for the funeral. I took some knitting along. With no concentration for knitting lace, I started another EZ Square Baby Blanket. It's mindless knitting which is just what I needed. We arrived in the small town my parents hail from too late for the visitation on Friday night. We stayed overnight with my Uncle Bob and Aunt Janet and caught up on family news. Their daughter, my cousin Kim, gave birth to a baby boy on Monday, June 18. I brought along the baby blanket I recently finished as a baby gift. I'm sad to say I didn't get a chance to see the baby.
Saturday started out hot, humid, and sunny. The funeral took place in the early afternoon at a small church in the country where my aunt was lifetime member. Her grandson, Brent, played guitar and sang. The pastor kept the service short, sweet, and very personal. It's the first time I've seen a pastor break down during a funeral. He had to pause for several minutes as emotion overtook him. You see, my aunt was well-loved by everyone she knew and every life she touched. Betty embraced life and radiated joy. I always remember her with a smile on her face or laughing. She had a very generous heart and was there to help whenever someone was in need. Her hugs wrapped you in love. I will miss her.
After the burial, we were invited back to the church for a buffet lunch prepared by members of the church. The food was wonderful. I got to see and talk to family members I haven't seen in a few years. I wish we could have stayed longer to visit but hubby wanted to drive partway home tonight.
At 5:00 pm we began what should have been about a 3 hour drive to Indianapolis. We were only 50 miles into the trip when the sky got very dark. As we continued on, it began to rain and then pour. The ditches on either side of the road were flooded, the corn in the fields was blown over (though we hadn't felt any wind), and the lightning show was breathtaking and intense. Out in the middle of nowhere, with no place to stop, we kept going. When we finally reached Interstate 70, we stopped for a break. Lots of cars were pulled off in this small town. We heard reports that there had been 3 tornado touch downs in the area we had just driven through. Yipes!
We got back on the road heading east from Illinois into Indiana. The weather wasn't improving and the heavy rain didn't stop. To get a break, we decided to stop in Terre Haute for dinner. We pulled off the interstate to find the city streets flooded. While we ate dinner, we hoped that the storm would move off. It didn't. We got back on the road, darkness fell, and the rain followed us all the way to Indy. It's hard enough to see to drive in heavy rain in daylight; it's even worse when it's dark. Our neverending drive finally ended at 10:30 pm when we pulled into our motel's parking lot. I was so glad to get off the road!
Lots of people were looking for someplace to stay due to the heavy rain. If we hadn't had reservations, we might not have had a room for the night. I was so worn out I was asleep not long after we arrived. Happily, the trip home from Indy on Sunday was quick and the weather cooperated. I'm happy to be safely home again.