Finding Some Fuel

I'm so tired. My day started two hours ahead of usual, and ended over two hours later. It involved spending over seven hours in the car on a drizzly day. I came home tired to a messy house and the prospect of another day of long hours in the car ahead of me. So, understandably, I started to feel a little whiny (you might have noticed!).  

I decided I needed to do a little exercise (seeing as I had sat idle in meetings or the car nearly the whole day), and in the process, I took a step back. The part of my day which seemed like the biggest chore, the most mundane, the least interesting, was probably the most exciting and full of promise.  

Let's get real. Most people don't get all that pumped up about driving a van. Families see them as a rite of passage, something purchased out of necessity instead of passion. No one buys a van because it's the car they dreamed of since age 16… it's a NEED, not a WANT. 

Which brings me to my point. In the gray fall drizzle, we stopped in Whitestown, Indiana, on our way back from a meeting in Logansport, to pick up a wheelchair-accessible van. This van was a long time coming - applied for from the Indiana Department of Transportation in 2011 and the required matching funds sought and received from The Gheens Foundation in 2012. Here's the beauty, as I first saw her:

Gorgeous, isn't she? :)

But really, she IS. 

You see, the beauty will come in all the miles she will earn. Our ACCESS program might use this van to deliver Meals on Wheels to the homebound and elderly, to see a play at Derby Dinner Playhouse, to go to Huber's Orchard, the Carnegie Center for Art and History, or any number of activities and attractions. It will provide a way for our Supported Living residents to reach their jobs at Rauch Industries or in the community, and a way for them to cheer on a game at Slugger Field or enjoy a brunch at Frisch's on the weekend. 

After thinking about all those beautiful miles this van will earn, I'm not so tired anymore.  And I think she looks a little sportier, too. Live long and prosper, van! :)



Teressa Jackson

I am a lifelong resident of New Albany. I am fortunate to also work in this community as the Director of Development of Rauch, Inc. Rauch, a not-for-profit organization, has helped create a community where everyone belongs for people with disabilities for 60 years. Through this role, I help promote the agency to the general public, creating awareness of our contributions to those in need and support in the form of others' time, talent and treasure.