Archive for the ‘Heading West’ Category

We left Kingman, ready to greet the day. Interstate 40 makes a big swing to the south then west then north again to get to Needles, CA, so I figured we’d go straight west to Laughlin, NV…a new state for Allie… then catch US 95 and take it south to I-40 west of Needles. But somewhere in Laughlin we crossed the river (the only river in miles is The River…the Colorado) and didn’t realize it. (more…)

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Allie and I had a wonderful supper last night at an Italian bistro in the middle of Williams. We enjoyed Zuppa Toscana and a scrumptious salad then headed back to the motel on the edge of town. We went to bed early, had trouble getting to sleep, slept a little, were awake a long time, repeat, repeat. Ack…not what we wanted before a big day. (more…)

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August 6, 2014

I’ve spent the last couple of days with my granddaughter Allie’s mom and her family in a suburb of Phoenix. The weather, as one would imagine, has been hard to adjust to especially after spending a few days at higher elevations. The hardest part for me is realizing just how hot it gets in a closed car when the outside temperature is 104. (more…)

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Excuse me, dear readers, while I answer the morning’s email:

Dear Louise, I wish that you were riding shotgun! By the time I left VA (while you were gallivanting on the other side of the world), I could have filled a small bus with all the people who wanted to join me on this trip! Thanks for the wonderful pictures of Texas…I’ve been to several of those places. One thing they left out is the awesome margaritas in Texas. Just sayin’…Love, Thelma. (more…)

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Once again I set off under what my friend Donna calls “messy skies”. I love her description: the wide sky is like a double page in a children’s book on weather, showing every kind of cloud formation there is.  This is the monsoon season in the desert southwest and it seems the higher you are, the more rain there is likely to be. But I’m getting ahead of myself. (more…)

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I drifted off to sleep last night to the sound of gentle rain and woke to cooler temps and lighter clouds. Donna and I found another place for breakfast and enjoyed one more scrumptious meal. Checkout from the inn, which had no vacancies for tonight, confirmed my tentative plans to continue up the road after breakfast. (more…)

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It is a good thing my blogging friend called me before she arrived at the hotel, as I hadn’t slept well and was finally sleeping soundly at 7:15. Then the hot water refused to make its presence known, so I got half a shower…one half of my hair wet, the other half dry. Despite the rocky start, the rest of the day was memorable. (more…)

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Yesterday was a lovely, relaxing day hanging out with my cousin in his new home. He left for work a little after noon (it helps to be the owner of the business) and I caught up on some of the inevitable chores associated with travel.  Dinner was even nicer than the night before and he introduced me to the new lady in his life. Great company, wonderful food. (more…)

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July 28, 2014

Tickets were bought last week for the movie Hercules in 3D and IMAX, so my hosts loaded grandchildren and me in the requisite Texas pickup for the 10:15 am showing on this Monday morning. The 3D effects were much better than the movie we saw last week. At that hour of the morning, we had the theater almost to ourselves and enjoyed the movie without the noise and interruptions that might have been.

I’d loaded the car before we left, so said my goodbyes and headed west about noon. Down the road past the neighborhood school to a left turn on Main Street, past the big tree where we watched a parade a couple of years ago, and onto I-10. If I remember right, I-10 eventually runs into the ocean at Santa Monica, but that’s far away. I just need to get through Houston first.

Houston seems to sprawl almost as much as Los Angeles and the traffic, even at noon, is way beyond what I’ve grown used to in the sleepy Shenandoah Valley. It was an hour at least before I was away from city and could see even a bit of open space. Eventually the lanes narrowed down to two on each side and traffic moved at 80 mph.

I managed to stop for gas before the need became acute, unlike the first time I made this trip a few years ago. A phone call to my cousin directed me to his office, a place I can find without difficulty. From there I followed him a few miles NW of San Antonio to his new home where we relaxed and cooled off then went to dinner. We returned to his most comfortable home and talked until midnight.

We have little family other than our own immediate families and neither of us sees the other cousins, so over the past few years we have grown closer. It is so nice to be able to share memories and insights that we cannot find anywhere else. At some point we decided that one night was not enough, so I will be here for another day before beginning the long, hot stretch to El Paso.

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I left Oxford, AL a little after 9:00 in heavy overcast that looked like rain. Sure enough, I’d no more gotten back up on I-20 than the light rain began. Fortunately the road was dry and the rain light, so there was no spray from trucks and other cars. I was late enough to miss the inbound rush hour for Birmingham and despite the rain, I could enjoy the trip. (more…)

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