"Ark Encounter," my husband read aloud as we passed by a sign on Interstate 75 for the creationist theme park in Williamstown, Kentucky. "We sure have been getting a lot of flood references lately. Now it's getting biblical."
The flood references have been coming pretty rapidly the past couple of weeks. Our dishwasher flooded our kitchen and then subsequently our basement. Our new RV had a roof leak, which flooded down onto my husband's head when we first drove it off the lot. Our yard flooded in a storm right before we left. And now, an interactive Bible-based attraction.
To be fair, in the midst of a pandemic, it's hard not to think of even the most minor setbacks and irritations as biblical. A pimple equals boils. Murder hornets equal locusts. And Kanye West's running for president equals the end of days. Though our floods have been far from Old Testament-worthy, they have given us pause to consider, "Is this a sign?"
For months, we have been planning an RV trip around the United States. My family was supposed to leave in early July, but the dishwasher incident caused our departure date to be pushed back. Now we're finally on the road, but something uncomfortable lingers.
I don't tend to be someone who believes in signs. I always look incredibly awkward when giving a peace sign. I unabashedly ignore the red hand and walk anyway. And I just recently learned what my Pisces sign represents. However, as a child of the '80s and '90s, I must have had Ace of Base seep in deep somewhere, because despite my not looking for signs and my not believing in them, I'm always looking to have some sign "open up my eyes." Therefore, I started noticing a negative trend of events, and they all seemed to be flooding toward the same outcome of disrupting, postponing or ending my trip. Also, nearly every friend I have was saying, "Maybe you shouldn't go. You seem to be getting a lot of signs that you shouldn't go."
"Why shouldn't I go?" I asked my friend Poppy. "What do you think this is a sign of?"
"I dunno, girl," she said, shaking her head. "But if you wind up dead, I'm gonna tell your grave, 'I told you so.'"
I was thinking of that line the first night of our trip. We'd left late and miscalculated our distance. Hours from our reserved campsite, we spent the first night of our yearlong adventure in a Walmart parking lot. I have slept in many places in my life. I've slept on park benches and in empty train stations. I've slept on strangers' couches and ferry docks. But sleeping in an RV in a Walmart parking lot was an entirely new experience. Perhaps it was that the bustle of movement outside did not die down. Perhaps it was simply that my racing mind did not die down. Perhaps it was Poppy's line about me dying.
But come morning, the sun was shining. The kids were smiling, and I felt refreshed.
A few hours later, as we were heading toward our first intended stop — Batesville, Indiana — we passed by the Ark Encounter.
"We sure have been getting a lot of flood references lately," my husband said. I looked at the sign and thought, "Yes, we have. And now we are passing the Ark Encounter. The floodwaters have gone. We are safe and moving forward to our destination." Perhaps, if those signs were signs, they worked. We missed what we were supposed to miss. We were postponed for the length of time we were supposed to be postponed. We slept in a Walmart parking lot because we were not meant to sleep in Indiana. Not that night. Not yet. And now the waters were dried up.
We arrived safely at Indian Lakes RV Campground. My husband parked the RV and put out the sides. I hooked up the electricity and then the water. I set up the chairs and sat in the sunlight, marveling that we had done it. We actually have taken off on this adventure. What a marvel!
Then, an expletive from the RV — followed by my husband screaming, "The water! The water!"
I ran to turn off the water and then went into the RV. The faucet had been left open, and the drain had a stopper. Water from the bathroom sink was flooding down the hall, past our tiny kitchen, into the living area and under the couch.
I looked at my husband, on hands and knees with a towel.
"Lots of flood references."
Katiedid Langrock is author of the book "Stop Farting in the Pyramids," available at http://www.creators.com/books/stop-farting-in-the-pyramids. Like Katiedid Langrock on Facebook, at http://www.facebook.com/katiedidhumor. To find out more about her and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.