Good bye old life, hello new life

Today I’m saying good-bye to my old life and welcoming my new one.

We arrived at our new home-town safely on Friday evening.  We have spent the weekend trying to keep cool – the temps have been around 115 (give or take a few degrees) and because it’s the desert, hardly any humidity.  This is such a change from the last several years where we lived in places where the humidity was much higher.  Tomorrow I re-join the work force.  Mixed feelings for sure!

The day we left Illinois was a bit sad.  Before leaving I did a walk around and it seemed like the garden was in bloom just to say “good bye”.

My pretty white zinnias,

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the luscious tomatoes,

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my favorite, raspberries (which were not supposed to fruit until next year),

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the wonderful black currants,

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delicious zucchinis,

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the bright glads and

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my beautiful, little roses.

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But it was time to go.  Truck was loaded and trailer was packed, so off we went.  It only took the first night at the hotel for me to learn to park where I could get myself out!

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And this is my friend’s house.  She has graciously opened up her home for us to stay in until we can find our own place.  It’s good to have friends!

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And it’s off to work in the morning!

Tempe AZ

Good morning from Arizona!  We are in Tempe, which is just outside of Phoenix to the east.  Today is the home stretch and we hope to get to Ridgecrest CA early evening.  Today we’ll only have to do about 450 miles.

Yesterday was a good day.  We finally got through Texas (that state is just way too big when you are driving across it!) and New Mexico.  We’ll be out of Arizona in a couple of hours and then into California.  That will feel good.  But the driving itself has been very easy.  Long, long ribbons of highway, two lanes in each direction, and very little traffic.  I was concerned about the winds and sandstorms but we didn’t get any.  We saw lots of dust devils tho.  And we’ve seen the scenery change from lush green to grown.  From trees with gorgeous leaves to cactus and brown grasses.  I’ve lived in the desert before, twice, and both times there were droughts.  Apparently not this year because for the first time I was able to see desert flowers – which are beautiful.  It was so hard not to pull over and take photos.  But the shoulders are the roads in these areas are not too nice, and we did have winds (not too strong) and I am so uncomfortable pulling the trailer that I decided I just didn’t want to go there.  I am hopeful that the blooms last a bit longer and I’ll be able to get out with the camera in a couple of weeks.

Our cats, which ride in their carrying cases, are fed up with the trip.  Neko, our scaredy cat, has been hiding as soon as we let her out in the hotel rooms.  Last night she came out and walked around for a long time and even slept with Chelsea.  It’s good to see her out and about.  Sapphire, our too social cat, now runs when she hears the voice of a stranger.  I am sad to see them so upset, but today is our last day on the road so hopefully they can get back to “normal” soon.

The beds last night were awful.  Too soft and lumpy.  I kept waking up and so finally, about 5, I just gave up and got up.  Hopefully I can walk out the kinks which have seemed to settle in my muscles.

Tomorrow we’ll be taking our stuff to a storage room and returning the trailer.  I’m glad I had the trailer so that I could bring a few more belongings, but I will be so happy to be rid of it!  And then Sat and Sun to rest before re-joining the workforce on Monday.

And now it’s “California here we come”!

El Paso

We made El Paso last night – and it was such an accomplishment.  We’d decided to hit the road early and make yesterday our longest day.  I think that may have been a mistake.  By 9:30 I was so tired I could barely keep my eyes open so we pulled into a rest stop and I slept for about 40 minutes.  Slept sitting up in a hot truck with the windows down.  That is how tired I was.  Then we hit the road again, but I faded about 1:00 so we had to stop for sleep again.

I had decided that perhaps El Paso was overly ambitious so we looked at the map for other options and decided that there really weren’t any, so on down the road we went.

As we were nearing El Paso we tuned into a local radio station to hear that there was a big hole in the I-10 (the road we were on) but no further details were known.  Soon the highway hazard lights began flashing and we were advised to tune into a local AM radio station, which we did.  All we picked up was static!  We kept checking back with the radio and kept getting static.  All of a sudden our GPS beeped and out route changed.  Sure enough, the GPS picked up the problem and re-routed us.  About 10 minutes later we were able to pick up the radio station and got the details.  A hole in the interstate.  Who would have thought that could happen?

Anyway, we followed the GPS and ended up near the boarder.  I think Texas marks it’s roads a bit poorly, and for awhile we were in the lane to Juarez, Mexico.  We eventually got into the other lane, but it was fun to watch the people in the cars and those walking towards the boarder.  They were laughing and joking and having a good time, like a big block party.  Finally we rejoined the interstate and made it to the hotel.

On the road from 6am to 7pm – what a day (in spite of my naps).  Much too long so today we decided to sleep in and get caught up on the rest.  We’ll be going for breakfast and then loading up and on the road again.

Look out Phoenix, here we come!

San Antonio

We arrived at our friends’ place near Houston the night before last.  What a gorgeous home they have, filled with treasures large and small collected from all over the world.  It was wonderful seeing remembered tokens and looking at new ones.  B and F treated us like royalty and it was wonderful to be pampered after the last week.  Yesterday we spent the day catching up on news, relaxing and enjoying wonderful conversation and food.  What a great time.  THANK YOU B AND F!!!!

We have arrived in San Antonio, hot and tired.  Chelsea has a friend over and I’m going to enjoy chilling out and watching TV and reading.  Tomorrow is a long, long day — about a 11 hour drive.