Here's how I finished a lovely week up in Mammoth Mountain:
About six miles north of nowheresville, I heard a very strange sound coming from my car. Not good. Luckily, there was a very good place to pull off the highway, very safe. I stepped out of my nice, air-conditioned car onto the blazing Mojave Desert sand to observe my completely flat tire.
There I was.
A woman with three small children, stuck in the middle of the desert, in July.
And that is why cell phones are one of the most magnificent inventions EVER!
I had more problems when I called AAA and they didn't have me as a member on their computer - which took 45 minutes to screw their heads back on (while I was sitting alone with three kids in the middle of the desert in July).
FIVE HOURS LATER I was back on my way home. That's how long it took to deal with AAA, wait for tow truck, get spare tire put on, drive no more than 50 mph to next big town, have tire changed, make several poopy stops here and there. Be careful out there. I consider myself lucky. Cell phones, portable DVD players, air conditioning, and Costco samples were major life savers.
Remember to always have these four things on you or nearby.