Travel and lodging in West Virginia

I wanted to write a little about the logistics of my weekly drive and accommodations while in West Virginia; and this is the way of it. I drive there Sundays; I used to leave at around 2 a.m. and attend the Lord’s Supper (Breaking of Bread) meeting at Otsego Bible Chapel, reasoning that if I went to my local church (Harvest Indy), I wouldn’t arrive in time to see David (every day of that week from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m., except for Saturday where I see him at 11 a.m.). However, that was when my GPS was still set to avoid tolls (I thought it wouldn’t avoid the ones it knew I had an EZ-Pass for, but it avoided them too), and now that travel time is about an hour less–about six hours–I can go to Harvest for the first service at 8:30 a.m. (and meet my friend for coffee before), stay for the music/singing, leave around 9 a.m. (putting the sermon on in the car, phone over Bluetooth), and still be there in reasonable time and with a buffer to stop and rest if needed.

I head back Saturdays at 2 p.m. after seeing David (I have asked for a little more time with him–I am there all week after all–or overnights, but she has never relented even a little). I was driving straight to my “D&D&D” (Dungeons & Dragons & Discipleship, a Christian small group and D&D group out of a church plant in Zionsville, Real Life Indiana) group for a while.

In 2018 when I got to see David while she was still claiming to be “thinking and praying” about her actions and restoring the family, I stayed at the Twin Falls state park campground some weeks, and the lodge there when it was colder (much more expensive, understandably). From near the end of 2018 until the above arrangement was court ordered starting August 2020, she withheld David completely; and then I started going to the lodge or camping again (I did pick up a larger tent, and reactivated my cell Internet modem so I could work). But at some point I saw a banner for a place called the Highwater Inn (kitchen and main room pictured above), and called the owner and arranged to stay there during the week (apparently he knew Roy, who vouched for me). That was cheaper than the state park lodge, much closer to town, more private, and had cooking facilities (vs. me bringing a hot plate and cooking on the room balcony!) – and Internet. Since the owner primarily rents to trail riders on the weekends, he was able to give me a reasonable deal during the weeks I was there, but I usually had to move to the lodge Fridays. Packing up Thursday night and Friday morning became a sign that the week with my son (even though the time is ridiculously limited), was almost over.

It is, as I said, around six hours, maybe 6h30, depending on time and traffic, each way, and about (a little under) 400 miles from my house to Otsego Bible Chapel (I use that because it is recognized by Google Maps, whereas their house, which is just a short walk from the chapel, has no address, although it has the number ‘226’ on it and is near a street marked as Carnation Lane, either in Otsego, or maybe Mullens annexed it?) Given that, and that (as of beginning June 2021) I have traveled there for 22 weeks (since August 2020, not counting 2018), I have spent 264 hours driving and driven about 17,600 miles (not counting trips to the park etc.). This is ridiculous, of course, and part of why I so wish to bring David Home to Daddy. It has also been hugely expensive (and a reasonable judge will subtract off the costs from her “child support” or other loot): about $1500/month (some variation, weeks I camped were cheaper, but can’t really bring David to a tent anymore; weeks I had to stay at Twin Falls all week were the most expensive), so for the same 22 weeks, $16,500. Of course I would pay that for my son, but it is so unnecessary, more “fruit of the poisonous tree” of Honey turning from God.

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