Hello everyone! If you read my last post, you will know that I am on a road trip with two of my sisters, our mother, cat, and snake. I know, a cat and a snake in the car together!? But they have actually been very well-behaved and calm. And the reason we are travelling to Tennessee is because my mother and sister Kuyuki are moving there, while Brianna and I are just visiting until July 28th.
We spent LITERALLY all day packing up the house yesterday and it took us way longer than we expected. It is also over 100 degrees in California, which is not okay when you're packing and lifting boxes to load up the trailer. We also had kids coming up to our door wanting to pet our cat and asking for some games and clothes that they saw while we had our front door open. One kid even tried to walk into our house as if it were his own, which was kind of stressful considering kids were everywhere and we were having to dodge them while carrying heavy boxes all while keeping track of all the random kids coming to our house making sure they didn't steal anything. Finally we just started shoving everything in the UHAUL because we were getting so tired. At one point our mother was so determined to fit as much stuff in the very back as possible that she climbed all the way in there to shove more things in tiny spaces. Kuyuki and I were laughing so hard because all you could see was her feet hanging out the middle of the trailer. We had to be packed and out of our townhome by midnight and we finished just in the knick of time at 11:45pm. Boy we felt accomplished once the house was all packed and empty!
Before we left we stopped by a family friend's house, as well as our father and step-mother's house to say goodbye. Afterwards, we stopped by WalMart to get a few snacks, and we were on the freeway at last by 1am. I, of course, fell asleep in the car and when I woke up at 5am, everyone else was still wide awake.
We stopped around 9am in Kingman, Arizona and got a hotel at the Quality Inn to rest up before getting on the road again. Our plan is to drive at night since it gets so hot during the day and our car does not have air conditioning. I was already rested so I stayed awake and checked social media, made oatmeal with the quaker instant oats, banana, and blueberries that I kept in my purse, looked up recipes online, and watched YouTube videos until everyone else woke up for lunch. We ate at a Cracker Barrel nearby our hotel. I hadn't been there since I became vegan, but I was so excited when I saw that they had side dishes like brown rice pilaf, pinto beans, and vegetables, among other things. I ordered the Vegetable Plate where you chose from four side dishes. My first side dish was going to be their pinto beans. I had heard somewhere, though, that their beans had ham in it, so I asked our waitress if she could leave it out, but she said it was already mixed in and it would still have the ham flavoring in it since it has been sitting in the beans. So the pinto beans were out of the question. Then I was going to order the brown rice pilaf. I asked if it had any meat in it, and she said it has a chicken base. So that was out as well. Finally our waitress asked if I was a vegetarian. I told her that I was a vegan and she said that she was a vegan herself a few years back and that Cracker Barrel is not a good choice for vegans, but it is do-able. She recommended the Cucumber, Tomato n' Onion Salad, so I ordered that, as well as their Fresh Steamed Broccoli, Baked Sweet Potato, and Mixed Seasonal Vegetables. My sister Kuyuki, who is vegan as well, ordered the same thing I did, except she got Sweet Potato Fries instead of the Baked Sweet Potato. Their fried okra and hashbrowns are vegan as well, however I do not eat gluten, and do not care for their fried okra anyhow, but I just thought I'd let you guys know that their fried okra and hashbrowns are suitable for vegans for whoever is interested. I feel like I sometimes come across as being picky and demanding when ordering at restaurants, so I was glad that our waitress had experience being a vegan so she was able to help us out and can sympathize with our dilemmas of being vegan while dining out at non-vegan restaurants.
Our meals were delicious and filling and we could not even think about food by the end of it, but we went across the street to WalMart anyway to pick out snacks for the rest of our journey across the states, which was hard since nothing sounded good at the time. We hurried back to our hotel as it was getting extremely hot, turned the air conditioning on as soon as we walked in, and are now relaxing until it cools down enough to get back on the road. I am typing this post in our hotel now while everyone else is taking showers. I see no point in it since we'll be getting hot and sweaty soon after anyway. One random thing I forgot to mention which we all found funny was that on the back of our hotel room door, there are two picture frames with someone dressed up as Ronald McDonald. Just a random fact...
We cannot leave the hotel until after 9pm because I have to register for my fall semester classes at that specific time. Nothing else is going on at the moment, but I will try to keep my blog updated on all our adventures while on the road and once we get to Tennessee. Goodnight!