Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Miles to go before we sleep.

I would love to say that we dipped our toes into the Pacific before beginning our drive, and that three days later we dipped them in the Atlantic. In reality, we weren't thinking about symbolism and ritual as we left, and by the time we got to our destination, about 80 miles from the Atlantic, 80 miles seemed like a long way to drive for a metaphor. But we could have.

15 states in seven days. And not those teeny New England states, either: California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana and back through Texas, New Mexico, Texas, New Mexico (yeah, the road loops around that way), Arizona, California.

We're more tired than a 22-wheeler, but we're back at the ranch. There's so much I want to write about: whacky weather, bat caves, cheap land, pentecostals, carbon offsets, recycling at truck stops, books on tape, billboards, gator ponds, walmarts, la migra... but it's enough right now to battle the ghost of the highway. Our bodies are so used to feeling that steady surge of the truck that now we're like sailors trying to get our land legs back.

On her recent trip, Amy found smashed pandas. Our drive was like a visit to Wes Craven's Natural History Museum, a gory display of North America fauna. It was especially sad and fascinating to see a puma by the side of road as the sun was rising in New Mexico. We also saw pronghorn antelope, white tailed deer, mule deer, badger, javelina, turtles, and one large creature that might have been a black bear. And of course a lot of little armadillos. Happily we didn't contribute to the mangled menagerie, and managed to make it home without snagging even a speeding ticket.

We are both tired and inspired.

4 comments:

Marty said...

Yes, the sad menagerie of the road. I hate especially to see so many turtles, as I do down here. The puma is most surprising. 'Course, the bear might have been a skunk ape.

George said...

Welcome back. We expect a full(er) report once you stop moving. All that recollected in tranquility stuff.

CreditWalker said...

You are well done to pass such long and interesting way. Perhaps I will not be able to do the same. Thanks for sharing your amazing adventure.

Tyson said...

Traveling around the coutry is awesome. 13 states! that's impressing.