I am in Holbrook, Arizona this evening. I was really tired by the time I stopped. My sleep patterns have been messed up by it being two hours earlier than when I left Savannah, and I have one more time zone to pass through. I go to sleep earlier in the evening and wake up earlier as well – this morning I figured I might as well get up early and get on the road. I’m glad I did because I hit Albuquerque a little before 10:00 am and the traffic wasn’t too bad. I was glad to get through it though – I think that should be the last big city until I hit Sacramento.
The GPS stuck to the window until somewhere around Gallup, NM. I caught it and managed to get it re-stuck (no small feat while driving). I have received several comments about the possibility of getting a dish or holder that I can place on the dashboard to hold the GPS. It won’t work with my model Ford, I’m sorry to say. There is no place level enough on the driver’s side to hold anything, and the passenger side is too far away for me to see. I love my truck, but wonder who designed the dashboard and panels – I can’t see the critical gauges such as fuel, odometer, and oil, because the steering wheel is in the way, and because they are so faint they are just about unreadable. I realize that my cataract has a lot to do with vision problems, but everything is really faint – the whites and reds just fade into the background. Even the speedometer is difficult to read, which is why I rely more on the GPS to tell me how fast I’m going.
As always, New Mexico is exquisite! I didn’t see as much of ABQ this trip because I tried to concentrate on traffic more than the passing scenery. The roads were just about perfect most of the way with a few bumps now and then.
The terrain in New Mexico started looking “Arizona-ish” about the last 10 miles. Don’t ask me what I mean by that, because I don’t think I could put it into words, except to say that the rocks began to be a different color. New Mexico’s rock formations are more red, while Arizona has more earth hued rocks – this is my unscientific view and it may change in different parts of the states.
The signs warned me about 10 miles before Holbrook that the roadway was rough. It was then I realized I hadn’t secured two potted plants I have in the kitchen. Usually when traveling I put them into one of the sink bowls, with dish towels wrapped around them so they don’t scratch the sink. I had stopped back in NM for a quick use of the facilities and heard the furnace going, so I know I went to the kitchen to turn it off and the pots were intact, although I didn’t really take notice.
When I finally got into my site I went inside and sure enough, two flowerpots full of dirt were all over the kitchen floor and up onto the carpet. I saved most of the plants – aloe plants from some my grandmother had given me back in the 1970’s. I have carried shoots of those plants with me from then on, even to Ireland and back. Who knows from when it had been handed down to her, but I have a real thing about keeping it going. I worry about when I die, because my siblings or my kids don’t seem to have an ounce of interest in it but I have treasured it all along because it is a descendant of the grandmother plant. I guess after I die I won’t be worried about it!
The folks here at this KOA campground have been wonderful. One of the owners saw me pulling in and trying to figure out if I should get more level and line up better, so he directed me perfectly so that all my slides can be extended and the hookups are close. He even came back a little later and offered to help me with the hookups – he did the hose and electric, and I’m not bothering with sewer tonight.
I think I will stop at Needles, California tomorrow. For some reason the mere mention of Needles, CA puts Steinbeck’s “Grapes of Wrath” in my mind. I had never been there when I first read the book, and had never even heard of Needles. I will probably have to make one more stop between Needles and Sacramento, which will get me into Sac on Saturday evening. I may even make another stop so as to go into Sac on Sunday morning, the best time to drive through any large city.
This trip has been a very lovely one in so many ways, but I am sorry that I haven’t been able to see some things I may never again get a chance to see (the Grand Canyon, for one). I just don’t have the heart for exploring alone any more. No matter how many folks think and say I should just take it easy, stop and smell the roses, and all that type of advice, my answer is “Sorry, I’ve done that by myself when I was younger and I don’t have any more desire to do it at this stage of my life.”
I hope someday I reach the state of Contentment, although my gypsy heart and soul will probably never allow that.