Wave the Checkered Flag (Daytona 500 Part 6)

Rains came down.
Floods came up.
We went home.

Time check, it was about 4:00pm and there was no sign the rain would let up. So my sister and I decided to call in the parents for a ride back to Tallahassee. Had we known the race would definitely finish that night… who am I kidding, we still would’ve went home! The race didn’t start back up till 8:30pm so after our parents picked us up at 5, we would’ve had to wait another 3.5 hours, then another 2 or 3 hours for the race to finish! So we stayed at the track for a few hours after the rain started, but time went by fast because we met a nice family from New Jersey/Orlando (even though they were all cheering for the wrong guys- Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart!).

We caught a ride on the bus back to Lot 10, and after walking over dirt (which was mud, actually) roads, through mushy fields, we rejoined Mom and Dad for a trip home. We bypassed Cracker Barrel (oh, and more on my lunch with the Governor at a Nashville Cracker Barrel can be found here), and b-lined it home to catch the end of the race. Hey, Jimmie Johnson still had a chance and I sure wasn’t going to be that fan who missed his first place finish!

Turns out he didn’t finish in first but hey, neither did ol’ Jeffy Gordon so at least my sister wasn’t going to rub it in. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. won which seems sort of fitting after his dad’s #3 car was back on the track for the first time since Dale, Sr. drove it.

All in all, a great trip down to Florida for a fun time with my sister! Maybe we’ll do it again next year, but without the rain and the war of words with Gator Belly! I’m so glad she and I could go to the race. It’ll be a memory we love having for the rest of our lives. Sure it was a lot of driving for a whirlwind trip to Florida and back to Tennessee, but isn’t that sorta what life is about? Taking those moments to do something adventurous. To spend time with family, to laugh, to keep saying there’s no way Jeff Gordon will beat Jimmie Johnson, not because I really believe that, but because it makes my sister laugh. That’s what it was about for me. If she had a good time, then I don’t care about anything else.

Thanks for reading. Here’s a gallery of more pictures from Daytona and my drive back to Nashville. You are awesome for reading all these posts!

-Out of the Wilderness

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