The 15th of May arrived and I said farewell to my associates at the coal office in the fervent hope that this would be final emancipation from the drab existence of the past few years. All that remained before our journey were a few last-minute details. The car was given a final tune-up and servicing, the furniture put into storage, and our baggage packed.
My sister Elsie had returned from Mexico in the meantime, where, as a result of the stock market crash, she had lost her many years' savings and had been unable to find employment. At the last moment she elected to join our expedition in the same hope that the more populous East might provide opportunities she could not find locally.
By the time the last incidental expenses had been met in preparation, including the tune-up, our cash reserves were exhausted. We sold a stove and a phonograph and Elsie contributed her last fifty dollars to the kitty. We faced the long journey, a proposed trip of some two thousand miles in a derelict car with worn-out tires on gravelled roads, and without such essentials as a lifting jack or tire pump.