There and back again: a coffee addicts story? A story of Covid hibernation boredom gone horribly wrong? A story of a well deserved mid life crisis? Or maybe just a journey of miles, memories and thoughts as 50 approaches as explicitly as the consequences to changes I set in motion. In any case, I hit the 20,000 mile mark yesterday, though I didn’t do too much driving. I think I was still wiped out from Alaska, started out from Seattle in the pouring rain and found a hotel in the town I stopped at for a late lunch.

The early morning found me driving down from Takima, Washington through south central Washington and then eastern Oregon into Idaho. East. It gnaws at me a little bit. I spent a long time on the west coast. Between California, Oregon, Washington and Alaska, it was over a month. Back in Seattle, I felt the pull. As well as the uncertainty. But east I went.

I enjoy the drives. Especially when I am refreshed–or at least somewhat. The changing landscape is different in each state. I like driving towards what looks like a cliff and then you round a bend and there is an opening. You drive up to the pass and over, with a new vision before you. I was in Idaho before, but northern Idaho, before hitting the “reset” button, driving back to Seattle and then flying to Alaska. Now, I was in the south at the first exit, a welcome center along the Snake River on my way to Boise.

Boise was the original crossing point on the Oregon Trail. I stopped in Boise, much like any other major city, for some supplies (coffee and food) and then pushed on the next two hours to my planned destination for the night: Twin Falls.

I didn’t really stop there for any other reason than it was where a decision had to be made and it was a good, long drive to get my road legs back underneath me. I arrived, and realized I was in a “place.” Oh. I ended up here. Did you know that “here” was “a thing”? I didn’t.

For the first time in 20,000 miles and 74 days, all the hotels were booked. I had to go looking. Weekends aren’t always the best times to get a place, but with Covid it’s been simple. Even coming into the town, I crossed a bridge that had a lookout point. Next to the shopping center is the visitor’s center and this incredible view of the valley below. But even with that? Then, I looked it up. Yep, Twin Falls is definitely a “place,” a “thing.” I have some sight seeing to do tomorrow before continuing…I don’t know.

No, I do. Twin Falls is at the point in Idaho where I can press east. That’s how I was feeling when I was exhausted. I’m finding out a lot about myself and exhaustion amplifies depression. I’m all ready facing two of my main triggers each day, the whole “homeless” and “jobless” thing. The uncertainty. I can’t fight a battle on three fronts so desperately need a good night’s sleep tonight. But not to head east.

I missed an entire state! Arizona. Doesn’t surprise anybody, huh? I really enjoyed Utah, though, and was thinking of passing through Salt Lake City again. Then there are some national parks and monuments that I ant to see, even though one has a lottery to get into, with only 10 in person passes being given each day. I figure with my luck, I have a 1/10,000 chance? How can I not go to Winslow and sing an old Eagles song? And then on the way back up north, I can stop by Veil. I missed it the first time because the state was kind of on fire. From there, I can strike north into Wyoming and Montana. Then east to North Dakota. Then south…

I don’t HAVE to hit ALL 50 states. Scratch that. Yes, I do.

It was 32 degrees one morning when I woke up in Fairbanks. The leaves are starting to change. Fall will be arriving in the north soon. The temperatures are already starting to dip at night. Layers are required to follow the movement of the sun.

Really, I am tired. I guess I want to soak in the heat of the desert one last time. I know the cold is something that awaits me back east. It is the only thing I am sure of.

%d bloggers like this: