Dec 2011

Blog, North America


No Turning Back Now

When I was in college, I remember riding bikes from Flagstaff to Sedona with my friend Mike.  While descending from the Mogollon Rim into the bottom of Oak Creek Canyon we caught up to a minivan.  Being a college student, and thus having bad judgment, I took the initiative to fly past him in the oncoming lane as we approached the blind corner of a switchback.  By the time Mike passed him, the aggressive soccer dad driver had time to roll down his window and brandish a threat.  “If I catch you, I’m gonna kiiiiiilllllll you!”  Knowing that death by minivan would soon arrive, we sprinted for our lives and ducked into a campground before the angry soccer dad could catch and kill us.  Sometimes we look at all of the evidence and do stupid things anyway.  Sometimes we do stupid things because there’s nothing we can do about it.

And so we found ourselves moving out of the Dollhouse with 12 inches of snow on the ground.  Sheena, can you do anything about that?  I can’t do anything about that either.

As the snow falls at home, the deserts of Northern Mexico are entering their prime season, so December it is.  We spent the last couple of weeks packing boxes and moving them onto a flatbed trailer parked in the barn.  We completed the boxing operation on Friday night.  Now the Dollhouse is bleak, dirty, and without a bed, and we’ll still be living there for another week.

On Friday night we also had our going away party.  We’ve lived in Flagstaff for over 10 years, and have come to know some really great people.  Getting together with these characters is one of the things we’ll miss most.  I’m sure the next few years will fly by and we’ll meet a lot of wonderful people out there, but it still feels like we were saying goodbye to family.

On Saturday morning we finished loading the trailer and headed for my grandpa’s house in Chino Valley where we’ll be storing our things while we’re gone.

In my first blog entry I mentioned that Richard and Amanda Ligato were an inspiration for our trip.  I found it interesting that after two years on the road in Mexico, Central America, South America, and Africa, they were never the victims of any theft or other crime.  They returned to America with a renewed faith in their fellow man, only to find that their storage unit had been broken into while they were gone, and many of their valuables were stolen.  In an effort to avoid a similar fate, we chose to store our things with my grandfather, who is a level-one badass.

A highly decorated veteran of World War II, Vietnam, and the Korean War, he’s well accustomed to honing in on the enemy and cutting loose with his cannons.  And he has a DeLorean like Michael J. Fox.  He may look like a geezer, but he packs a mean punch.  Go tell your friends.

To round out our seemingly eventless weekend, we drove out to a remote ranch in the middle of Nowheresville, Arizona on Saturday night to spend the remainder of the weekend bidding ado to my dad and stepmom.  After a highly muddy backcountry tour on the 4-wheelers, some incredible food, and some very muddy roads, we were back on the road to Flagstaff on Monday morning.

And so it begins, our last week in Flagstaff.  Getting a little queasy now, and everything is moving fast.  Like we’re being gained on by a soccer dad with a death wish.

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  1. No turning back now! Of course there are always a few extra things you could/want to get finished, but those are just excuses. Have fun on the road, and keep the blog energy going.


    Comment by Todd on December 20, 2011 at 1:23 am

  2. Todd, sounds like you’ve been down this road before. I have a dozen van projects that I needed to get done, but probably won’t. Oh well, it’s just as easy to crawl under the van in Mexico as it is in Arizona.

    Comment by Brad on December 20, 2011 at 8:05 pm

  3. Kristine

    Congratulations! Wishes for safe & fun travels.

    Comment by Kristine on December 20, 2011 at 2:31 am

  4. you folks are so cool! terrific! i stumbled over your blog via the adventure journal just a couple of days ago and read it entirely in the last 2 days. wow!
    anyway, i met amanda and richard few years ago in laos while on a (mt) bike trip. they were really cool!

    Comment by oliver on March 28, 2013 at 1:06 am

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