One of the many reasons we take these annual treks is to see America.
Not to just fly over it.
Not to drive through it on an interstate.
Not to let Google maps route the fastest path from point A to point B.
To get off the beaten path, see things that locals get to see, marvel at things that tourists like to marvel at, and attempt to get a feel for things that make each and every state a jewel in it's own right.
Which usually puts us behind the wheel of a rental car once we arrive via the convenience of flying the friendly skies.
In my limited experience, rental cars can be problematic as much as they can be a blessing. The sub-compact selection we were assigned by RI Budget was no exception.
"Space 12, down this aisle, on your left. Keys are in it, here's your contract...show it to the attendant at the booth on the way out."
Problematic or Blessing? - our two-door domestic Chevy pocket rocket was shod in a chronic "slap-me-with-a-speeding-ticket" red skin. Wifey took a quick gander at the blazing hue and expressed her contempt for red cars, citing some long ago read AAA magazine article labeling them as beacons for ticket happy Highway patrol officers.
In a classic guy movie moment, my vision went tunnel and only two little letters, slapped stealthily on the side of the door of our $175-per week online rental deal came into focus....SS.
I quickly checked to make sure we were at the right space and looking at the right car.
Wifey quickly checked to make sure there were no pre-existing dents, dings, or scratches that we may get tagged with upon our safe, accident free and non-LDW signed rental.
The coast was clear -- for both of us.
Wifey got in as did our luggage. I popped the hood and found myself doing a dead eye stare with a 2.0L Supercharged DOHC ECOTEC four-cylinder.
Everything looks good under here," went my mouth.
"Vroom" went our rental car.
"Rhode Island rocks," went my brain.
Problematic or Blessing? - our rental actually had Oklahoma plates on it.
Yep, that's right. Two connecting flights, 1500 miles, a half dozen or so states, 2 bottles of water and several bags of peanuts later, we found ourselves sitting in a car that had recently made the same general trip as we had just made.
Why, you ask, could this be construed as problematic?
Tell me honestly, all you non-Okie's out there...when you are driving around your own state and spot a car in front of you with Oklahoma plates, what's the first thing that pops in to your head?
Thought so...thus the problematic label.
So, here we were, a couple of Okie's, driving a rental car with Okie plates, around a state that is not Oklahoma.
After making a mental note of which side the gas filler cap was on...to avoid that potentially embarrassing pulling-to-the-wrong-side-of-the-gas-pump situation (been there), we were off and running on the Rhode's roads.
End of Part 1
Next up, Rhodes roads Part 2 - Stranger on a strange road