I wrote about preparing to be on the road in a March 2022 post. (See: https://carlabrennan.com/back-on-the-road-again-well-sort-of-3-11-22/) That turned into a false start or, perhaps, a dress rehearsal. The year following has not unfolded quite as planned. Fortunately, that’s part of our chosen lifestyle, being open to change and opportunity.
After going to Flagstaff for a month in March we returned to our property in the Santa Cruz Mountains in April to stay in our travel trailer. I had planned a two week visit to New England at the end of May, to visit friends and family and help organize a celebration of life for my aunt who had died just before the pandemic.
We also had an invitation to spend a week sailing in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), after which we scheduled a week of camping on St. John. It didn’t make sense to get on the road until we returned from these two trips in early July.
Circumstances can turn on a dime. And I found that dime at Houston Airport on our way to the BVI. After a redeye trip to Texas from San Jose we were waiting there for a connecting flight. I was wandering around a lightly populated airport at 6 AM when I tripped and fell. It was a hard fall and resulted in a badly broken left humerus. After a trip to the emergency room and two days of recovery in a hotel, we headed back to California for more medical care and recovery time. It was a disappointing loss and my summer was spent supporting the healing of my arm. Almost a year later, my arm is much improved, the bone is set but I have torn rotator cuffs still causing problems.
Three weeks into August we got COVID. By early September we were well enough to head back to Flagstaff for two months to house and cat sit. In November we returned to dog sit in Los Altos Hills, at a friend’s place, while she was in India for a month. After she returned, we were invited to stay longer. We had thought we’d get on the road in early January and head to southern California for the winter. But instead, we opted to stay, partly because I had a lot of work to complete and I benefited from a stable place to stay and reliable Internet. As it turned out, it was a historic winter of rain, snow and floods in SoCal which we were glad to miss.
It took until mid-May before we were ready to actually fulfill our long-standing plan for full-time road travel. It’s been three weeks now. We spent over a week in Moss Landing, enjoying the cool weather, the ocean and coastline wildlife. We followed that with a week in Morro Bay. We have a deadline to reach Boulder Colorado by about June 16. I will be teaching a week-long nature-based meditation retreat at the Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center outside of Boulder.
So we said goodbye to the Pacific Ocean, not knowing when we would meet again. Our first stop was to a familiar hot springs in Tecopa, California, just at the southern edge of Death Valley. Because of the heat, summer is their slow season. The town was quiet; not all the hot spring centers were open. We stayed at Delights Hot Spring Resort and remained there for two nights, relaxing, dipping in the private tubs, and enjoying the attractive swimming pool of 95° water.
From there we headed to Utah where I had selected a possible boondocking spot on BLM land at Hurricane Cliffs near Zion National Park. By the time we got there it was nearly 8 o’clock and we did not know what to expect. But we luckily found a beautiful spot with expansive views of colorful and majestic cliffs, mesas, mountains and rock formations. Oranges, reds, ochres, greens of the spring vegetations, layers and layers of different colored rock creating a fantastic display of western magnificence.
I have many photos from the last weeks and will judiciously share them overtime. Here are a few that simply record the reality of us REALLY being on the road again!
Please leave a comment so I know you were here!
(Since writing this, we’ve traveled across Utah to the front range of Colorado. More to come.)