Less than a month before the total solar eclipse that was going to stretch from coast to coast I read an article that pretty much convinced me I needed to road trip to our closest point of totality which just so happened to be Columbia, South Carolina. I started looking at AirBNB’s and the prices were INSANE. So I figured that it just wasn’t going to happen for us. Then just a couple of days before the eclipse everything started to fall into place. I had a place to sleep, I had a place to watch it. I was going to meet a friend and reconnect with another. It was going to be amazing! We packed our bags and went to Costco for snacks!
Sunday night we jumped in the car, snacks packed, gassed up and ready to go. Just like I expected the traffic was pretty heavy but it was still moving and the path looked relatively clear. About an hour or so into our trip Miss Kyla declared that she had to use the restroom. I wasn’t thrilled but I spotted a rest stop coming up and pulled off. I left the car running while Kyla and I ran to the bathroom and back. When I got back into the car I got ready to pull out when I saw all my gauges drop. I thought it was odd so I turned the car off and tried to start it again and it was dead. A man and his wife who were parked next to me jumped my car but when I explained to him what happened he confidently told me that it was my alternator and that I shouldn’t drive anywhere else. I called B and we talked about what I should do and ultimately we decided to tow the car back home while my sister came and picked up the kids and I. We didn’t have to wait long but I let the kids run around a little while we waited.
They were so excited to go on this trip but they handled not going so gracefully. Way more gracefully than I could have imagined. I resigned myself to not seeing totality but I was determined to still make it fun! We had our glasses and we were still going to see 85.11% totality which isn’t too shabby. Not totality but not too bad either. We started our day with the kids decorating paper plates so they could attach their glasses to them.
Then we set up a blanket outside and watched the magic happen!
The kids thought it was so cool and so did I! Just like I thought Emilia wasn’t interested AT ALL in what was going on. She didn’t look up at the sun once even though we were all staring up at it (with our glasses on of course). Which was a good thing because she didn’t quite understand how to use it!
While we didn’t get to see totality but we did get to see 85.11% and it was pretty darn cool. Here’s hoping the kids remember this moment!