We got snowed in at the Petro in Colby, Kan., six days before Christmas. Needless to say, I hadn’t finished my shopping, because I’ve been too busy marauding around the United States and being a superstar on the celebrity truck circuit (which exists entirely in my own mind).
We had bought all the big stuff and had gifts shipped out to family who are far away, but the little things, like stocking stuffers and filler gifts had yet to be gotten. Even though George assured me we would not be stuck in Kansas for more than a day, I freaked out and insisted we buy the remaining items at the Oasis Truck and Travel Center.
I’m sure a lot of truckers out there are familiar with trying to find that perfect gift in the aisles of a truck stop. This was a new and frustrating experience for me. No one I know, except for George, would appreciate a shiny new set of load locks or lug nuts shaped like skulls. I was getting desperate.
“I’m going to get your Mom a lighter with Jesus on it.”
“My Mom doesn’t smoke.”
“Yes, but she loves Jesus.”
“I don’t think that’s a good choice.”
“I really don’t care what you think — you and your stupid truck got us stuck here.”
“Yes. I forgot. The weather had absolutely nothing to do with it. The truck and I apologize profusely.”
“How would your Dad like a giant pencil that says ‘Kansas – home of Oz’ on it?”
“About as much as my Mom is going to like the Jesus lighter.”
“Excellent. Put it in the basket.”
“We don’t have a basket.”
“Shut up and help me pretend I’m not doing my Christmas shopping in a Petro.”
We roamed around and picked out a few more items for the kids. It’s going to be a Kansas Christmas for our boy, as his entire stocking will be filled with memorabilia from the great state. Granted, the ruby red slippers and corn cob pipe might not be entirely appropriate, but my shopping is done, and I can sit back and enjoy the puzzled looks on the faces of my loved ones when they open their gifts. Life on the road is never boring.