Spend ten minutes watching the news and you are subjected to countless stories of selfishness and man’s inhumanity to man. Yet we spent 10 weeks on the road across this great country and were treated with nothing but kindness, selflessness and interesting people.
We traveled thousands of miles and have seen some of the most extraordinary beauty this country has to offer, and yet we have barely scratched the surface. Not to be corny, but from the wheat fields to the prairies to the mountains to the desert and sea, we have covered a wide swath of terrain. And that terrain is a whole lot more interesting when you are up close and personal. For example, we found that in the desert there is so much life, and colors, and textures… ever-changing as the sun follows its path (or more correctly the earth follows its path). We had never experienced the desert before, but we will be back for sure!
Over the last 10 weeks our activities have included dancing to bring in the New Year, hiking, biking, kayaking and exploring by car. We attended the Rose Parade on New Years Day, picked fresh oranges, played golf at Torrey Pines (oh yeah), drove an excavator in Vegas (how cool is that – only in Vegas, baby), enjoyed endless (and I mean endless) gorgeous views, watched the Patriots win the Superbowl (it does not get much better than that), watched Big Horned sheep in the wild locking horns, enjoyed public artwork scattered across the desert, took it easy in Winslow, AZ, had lunch at Guayo El Ray’s in Miami, AZ (add this to your dining pleasures!), visited Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West, enjoyed all the pleasures of Modernism Week in Palm Springs (thank you Mona Heath!), toured much of the southwest, attended La Fiesta De Los Vaqueros (Tucson Rodeo), enjoyed a visit by a herd of cows to the grill at our campsite, had lunch (green chili cheeseburgers) in the Owl Café (San Antonio, NM), and pretty much had a spanking good time.
We camped in a school parking lot (for an Airstream rally), camped in various BLM (Bureau of Land Management) primitive locations, camped in city, regional, state and national parks, stayed in one or two Wal-Mart parking lots, and even stooped to staying in one or two private campgrounds (oh, the horror).
The people we have met have been terrific – and interesting. I played golf with a retired physics professor at Purdue (30 years), retired for over 20 years and must be 85+ years old. Or the tattoo artist we met on BLM lands in Arizona, who full times in this beautiful motor coach with his wife and two children, self-schooling them in what could only be described as a pristine environment. Or the young couple that eschewed their corporate lives for a life on the road with a far higher quality of life. Or the stockbroker who full times in their RV and has tricked out the technology such that he can work the market from nearly anywhere with his directional wireless booster capabilities. Or the young couple entrepreneurs who are fashioning a new online services business they are creating on the road. Or all the countless other acts of kindness and generosity that were directed our way by many individuals along the way. Talk about nice (and interesting) people!
In a ridiculous attempt at over-simplification, I have included my “top 12” (or so) pictures/moments from our travel. Twelve doesn’t even provide for one picture per place we visited, so this is really silly. Anyway, here goes. What a great country we live in; we are so fortunate to have what we have. Safe travels – see you down the road next time!!