MIDLOTHIAN, Va. — On Wednesday, five roommates embarked from their home in the Fan to Wegmans in the heart of Midlothian.
The team started the journey with optimistic anticipation of what the destination had to offer. “We heard Wegmans was a grocery store goldmine, with opportunity for everyone,” a disenchanted Mary Beth Smithson recalled. “There was nothing left at the Kroger on Lombardy. So we set out from our home on Floyd Avenue with enough to survive the journey.”
Things began to get complicated, however, when they reached the edge of the James River and had to decide between attempting to ford the river, caulking their vehicle and floating it across, or waiting to see if conditions improved. Fortunately, the tide was low that day and the group was able to make it safely across.
But their tribulations didn’t stop there.
Shortly after the river crossing, the group’s vehicle broke an axle. Luckily, they were able to trade for a spare part and replace it. Morale was improving after the incident when suddenly one group member’s condition took a dark turn.
“When we came to Chippenham, Charles developed a bad stomach ache,” recounted Ezekiel Clark, a fellow traveler. “He got the chills really badly, and then he started throwing up. His symptoms only got worse when we came round to the Old Powhite Junction. Since we had all chosen to become bankers and teachers and farmers rather than doctors, no one could help him. We tried stopping to rest, but it didn’t really help his condition. He died just as we got on the turnpike.”
Following a brief memorial filled with grief, the group continued forward. After meeting a local guide near the Robious Road crossing and bartering for sufficient rations to survive the rest of the journey, they finally made it to Wegmans.
“Thank God we’ve arrived,” a teary-eyed Josiah Bishop exclaimed.
They were last seen stocking up on supplies and preparing for the long journey back to the city.