Thursday, January 25, 2007

Musings 191--The Road from California

I was in California for a week and have not had the opportunity nor inclination to post anything to River Valley Views. I mean, after the circus that the Iraqi government did with the execution of Saddam, I have figured that it was easier to watch old episodes of HBO's Deadwood than deal with reality.

My son Michael and I left California on a crisp Thursday evening. We headed down the 5 to the US 10. I caught the evening news in Phoenix, AZ that it was icy and snowing in Kansas and Oklahoma. (For those of you with maps--that is the way that I-40, aka old Route 66, goes.) I decided to stay south. It's warm in the south. At least that is what someone told me once.

We took a 30-mile detour to Tombstone, AZ and watched a cheesy enactment of the Earp's and the Clanton's gunfight. We went to Boot Hill Cemetery. It was neat by chilly. Who knew that Tombstone was 4,500 feet above sea level.

Back on Route 10 we zipped across Arizona and New Mexico. I saw my first road runner, but I did not see the coyote. We went through El Paso, Texas at about 8 p.m. Friday evening. It was the brightest thing we had seen in our journey, and we didn't even slow down. We spent the night in a place called Van Horn, Texas. That was when it started to rain.

The next morning, we left Route 10 and headed across Texas on Route 20. About and hour into the journey, I noticed that there was suddenly ice covering everything. The weather changed just that quick. For the next five hours we wove our was through the ice storm that had moved south from Oklahoma and Kansas. We counted at least 15 trucks--18 wheelers--that were turned over. Speed limit in Texas was 80 miles per hour. The truckers tried to maintain that even with the ice storm. They did not fair so well. It is flat country, but speed and ice makes big trucks flip over in the median. Plus, the semis pulling double trailers had absolutely no control when they hit icy patches. They're rear trailers would scoot around and smack the front and then they'd turned over--or broke into pieces. It was fun watching them and trying to stay out of their way.

When we got through Texas, after a total of 22 hours, we spent the night in Hope, Arkansas. We had out run the ran, but it was still chilly. Bill Clinton was from Hope. You remember him, he was president when we all had some, ah,...hope.

Next came Route 40 and Memphis followed several hours later by Nashville, TN. Since Nashville is only 17 miles from Kentucky, I opted to drive late in order to get home. It took us about four hours to drive from Bowling Green, KY to Chesapeake, Ohio. We were moving on.

At about 2:00 a.m. Monday, we arrived at Greasy Ridge, Ohio. We were finally home, and it felt good.

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