Kate lay by the pool on a blistering July day, the midday sun beating down on her canvas cabana. Her first summer out of college had proven less than memorable. Life at home had been wonderful, but her hard working Dad and supportive Mo didn’t know that wanderlust had hit their daughter hard. Summers in Ithaca were wonderful and the Hamptons were splendid, but when traveling back from visiting Grandma in North Carolina, Kate wanted to feel the wind in her hair and the surreal sensation of being out of her comfort zine. Moved by a burst of youthful spontaneity, Kate packed her suitcase with as much as it can carry, and grabbed her striped Kate spade purse- the first purchased she made at age 14 with money from babysitting- hopped on a plane, and laughed into the journey of her own Americana.
The plane landed on the gourd and Kate, amid the bustling spirit of a southern town, caught a taxi to the nearest inn. After having a sunset dinner at the Belle House circa 1868, which was just outside Birmingham, she went to her room which was very quaint and prim. On her pillow, lay a small box, wrapped in brown paper that was decorated with golden polka dots and wrapped in twine. After unwrapping the box, she noticed it was locked by a number dial system. Confused but insanely curious, she tried every four digit code she could think of. The address to the hotel, the room number, parts of the area code, souname it, she tried it. Although her efforts failed, she noticed a sticker on the bottom of the box that said, “Give to Lulu.” Exasperated, she set the box on the nightstand and went to sleep.
Kate sat in the driver’s seat of Baby, the hot pink 1954 Thunderbird that Lulu passed on to her after opening the key box. She had hardly believed her eyes. Now, as Kate sat staring at a blazing sunset on the west coast, she reviewed the last few days in her mind. All Lulu had said after dropping Kate off around the corner, and despite Kate’s bewildered, perplexed look was, “Don’t forget to read the user manual, honey!”
- Drive anywhere and select Baby’s next driver.
- Write your name on the bottom of the box and discreetly deliver it.
- Find a clever way to “meet” and introduce yourself to Baby’s next driver.
- Remind him/her to read the user manual.
- Be creative.
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