April (yet another savior), is the driver for the Holbrook Shuttle and she was very sympathetic about my situation, as have been all the people I've told about all the repairs, breakdowns and arrangements I've had to make throughout the trip. After I spoke to the customer service person the previous night about getting another van, I called April to see if I could hire her to drive me back to the van, unload it into her minivan and bring it back to my hotel room. She was game!
Here are my six weeks of supplies strewn about the hotel room.
As you will see, there is really not much to Holbrook. There is this tiny little dog in a rest area which has an actual lawn for dogs to pee and poo on! In Arizona.
Despite the "almost nothing" in Holbrook, there are 5-6 hotels and motels. The Best Western I stayed in was huge too, it's not like they were all tiny little motels. I asked April why there were so many and she said something about the railroad, and that housing is a problem and many people live in them. I found out later she's only lived in town for a month or so, so I'm not sure how accurate that info is.
One cool thing I did while there, besides spend almost and entire day on the phone with Outdoorsy, was go to a 12 step meeting. There were 41 people there according to the chair. I was one of two white women, most folks were Native Americans. It was the first 12 step meeting I've ever been to where there were 5-6 people there who said, "I'm here to support my community" (i.e., the Native American community). It was an open meeting, meaning anyone can go, you don't have to identify as a member to attend so it was cool that they were there. I really needed a meeting and it was a great one - lots of great sharing, and lots of laughter and comradery. Despite the cultural, economic and regional differences between me and them, I felt like one of the group. It was exactly what I needed.
I will not belabor this, but I will say that this day was incredibly stressful for me because Outdoorsy first led me to believe that I could end my rental agreement with Diane and get a new van, then it sounded like I could do so but would be responsible for getting it back to her in NY, then they tried to convince me to stick around while it was repaired and said they'd pay for my hotel and a car rental. At that point I said, "Ok, but what if it gets repaired, then breaks down again two days later, then gets repaired and breaks down again two days later? When does it end for me? How much do I have to go through for your to let me get out of this? I've already been through this a number of times!"
That may have done the trick, because right before I went to the 12 step meeting a manager from Outdoorsy called to say that these were extenuating circumstances I was under, so their usual policy about the renter being responsible for getting the camper back to the owner did not apply, that they would work with me to get my refund and would assist me in finding another van. The woman I spoke to, Cayla, was extremely helpful. Not only did she find a few campers to suggest, she sent them with pros and cons listed to make my life easier. Only one of them seemed to fit my criteria, but that one is too old to be covered by Outdoorsy's liability ins. and my ins. won't cover it so it was a no go.
More on that tomorrow...
THIS is Holbrook.
Ok, so they do have some businesses on the strip the hotel was on (including a junior college) but this is what I saw when I went for a walk.
Barb Nangle is the founder of Higher Power Coaching and Consulting, an entrepreneur and an eternal optimist. She loves motivating others to become better and better versions of themselves, just as she has become better and better versions of herself.