knackered.

[nak-erd]

adjective, British Slang.

  1. exhausted; very tired:

It’s been a jammed pack week full of driving through Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, and Utah, and Colorado. Many full days of ooh-ing and ahh-ing through snow covered mountain tops and Narnia-like forests and Mars-like deserts. Big skies and bright stars. Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks. Hiking and smiling and more driving. All have been great reasons to cause a knackered feeling. We sleep hard next to cacti at sometimes pretty campsites.

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Spirit Falls on the Little White Salmon River, Washington

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Camping on the Columbia Gorge

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Sawtooths in Idaho!

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Utah

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Zion National Park

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Took this for my Grandma Dixie!

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Bryce Canyon National Park! Whoaaaa

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We camped near Salina, Utah last night and I woke up excited to pick up Erica and Bryson at the Grand Junction Airport for a week in Moab! We set the alarm for 7:17am to have plenty of time to get them by noon. I woke to a text that they were delayed and were going to get in at 5:30pm. I dramatically reset the alarm to 11:17am. I couldn’t sleep and we got on the road and had an amazing breakfast at Mom’s Café (featured in National Geographic in 1996 and they’re still talking about it. I would be, too).

Twenty minutes from the airport, my Kia stopped accelerating when all I wanted her to do was accelerate to keep up with the 75 mph speed limit. “The car’s acting weird…” I said, as it dropped from 70 mph to 60 to 50 way too quickly. I put my blinker on and by the time I got safely off the road, Sangria Kia had completely died. She was knackered and she plum gave up.

“Hm. Shit,” were my eloquent words I think. I’ve been so impressed with her performance for this whole trip. I think I had a feeling something would inevitably go wrong sometime before all 11,000 miles or so were traveled. I have spoken highly of her and patted her dash often. “Good girl, Sangria, good girl.” Today, she gave up.

Dwayne looked under the hood and nothing looked obviously wrong. I called Geico roadside assistance and the overly kind lady told me the tow truck would arrive in two hours or less. We picked up trash along the side of the highway because I’m my father’s daughter. I even got twenty minutes of transcribing done. I finished the peanut butter M&Ms. It wasn’t so bad.

The tow truck arrived about an hour later. The driver looked like the kind of guy Wrangler makes jeans for, and I imagine he wore a 30×34. He was long and lean and wore real cowboy boots. His hair was gray and he had a lot of it still, he combed it back and to the side. He talked slowly and moved even more slowly.

“There’s a pair of coveralls in the middle. You can sit on those,” he said to me as he opened the passenger door.

“Are you from here?” I asked.

“Born and raised. Twenty years ago I thought about leaving. But seems I never did,” he said, while looking at the road and shifting gears carefully, as to not hit my knees. This reminded me of sitting in my grandpa’s white truck growing up. John, Greg, and I would all pile in and I was always the one who had to sit in front of the shifter. I smile when I think about this time with my grandpa.

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We chatted about important things and then I asked the most important question to our driver named Bill, “Is there a Chick-fil-A nearby?”

“Mmhmm. There’s one right down the road here,” he pointed. I expressed my excitement and told him I haven’t had any for over four months.

“I don’t much eat chicken anymore. No more chickens. Had my fill of ’em growing up. It was my job to chase them around and cut their heads off. Once with a rooster, I chopped his head off and he ran around and I had to chase him for the better part of an hour and a half! Without a head! I’m through with chickens.”

Bill was as sweet as he was slow and he waited to see if the mechanic could look at the Kia today instead of leaving us stranded. Turns out many cars have broken down today and places are busy. We’re going to be waiting over the weekend I believe and we sent Bill away with a thank you and a handshake.

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