Hey there, Folks! I’m seizing the time to share while I’m home, near my computer, and not relying on friendly northern neighbors for internet access ;-) The transition and shifting contrasts of living between two places is a new one for me, so I hope you’ll bear with me as I acclimate.
We’ve traveled these roads countless times, amassing almost as many memories of the drive as we have of our adventures. One of those memories comes to mind as I dared a quick look at the river far below, just as we all leaned left for another switchback.
Not yet June, in a year when summer blazed on winter’s heels; scorching springtime splendor, my husband couldn’t wait to go fishing up north. So he packed up his gear, his dog, and our young daughter at noon, mid-week, and headed for the mountains. I would follow after I’d finished up the work week on Friday. Years ago (before we had cellphones), there was a weather-beaten phone booth just outside the very last town before bear country. I knew my husband would use it to let me know they’d made the trip safely, right about the time I got home from work. But he didn’t. Mild concern boiled into searing fear and I’d worn a visible path in the carpet by 8; pm when the phone finally rang. They were fine, he said in a tired voice. They’d even had an impromptu picnic at the bottom of the canyon and frolicked in the river before trekking the last 100+ miles of the journey. The truck had performed well; “ran cool as a cucumber,” and nothing blew out of the back this time. You spent three hours at the river? I was incredulous. He never allows that much time for leg-stretching. “Oh,” he sighs “Sweet Pea lost her tooth on a corn chip.” That’s great, but… “She forgot it on the picnic table. We were 20 miles from here (the phone booth!) when she remembered.” Oh, Lord. The four-hour drive was long enough, but backtracking? Surprisingly, he was still talking, saying something about dinging the truck bumper while backing up. I truly hoped Sweet Pea was duly appreciative, and I wondered what she’d say when she got on the phone and gushed “Daddy hit a tree!” That’s it. That was her summary! Kids.
And then there are the imaginative adventures that spring from the scenery and leap onto the page as if chased by unseen demons…
Fully intent on fleeing the city, his Law practice, and the uncomfortable overtures of the tempestuous redhead, Jacob barely noticed the scenery at all. His aging Cherokee may as well have been heading north on auto-pilot as it navigated the dizzying switchbacks and hairpin curves of the Salt River Canyon. A little down time at the cabin was just what he needed, and that thought alone relaxed the stiffness of his hands on the steering wheel until a body exploded through his windshield… (Except ‘Canyon Crosses’)
Do you have a vacation memory which differs from others who were there? Have you had eventful journeys? Do you have a preference in transportation, car, plane, train?