Feel Good Pit Stop

“I feel like a kid,” the older man said while his wife was positioning him for just the right shot in front of the flatbed ford in Winslow, Arizona. His wife just gave him a look. I tried being helpful while waiting for my turn. “We’re all kids here,” I called out.

And we are. If you are in Arizona, you can’t not stop by the little town made famous by the song. And if you don’t know the song, you are either too young or grew up listening to the wrong music. It was under two hours from Sedona and just a nice little town along Route 40. Thriving but quiet, with people lining up to have their pictures taken at a corner in Winslow, Arizona.

A store next by is the trinket and gift shop. It plays, I imagine, Eagles songs all day along with songs from the members. I had just taken my turn and then THE Don Henley came on, the one that I have written about so many times, use to explain what I am doing, and has been on my ind since I first heard it back when it came out back in 1989. I loved the song, New York Minute, but it also terrified me even then.

Graduating high school, eventually making my way to college, I knew Henley was talking about my future and there was not much I could do about it. I just didn’t have the tools. I had always hoped to find them to “change my stars” but the world moved onward and I did as well. I sat there in Winslow, sipping my coffee, smoking a cigarette, and listened to the song. Rest in peace, Harry. I’m far too much in this world, but I’m now trying to finally change that. The hope is is my clothes will be found scattered on some beach with a foo foo drink with a tiny umbrella waiting for me, a respite before unfolding my wings and launching into the other world.

“Harry got up
Dressed all in black
Went down to the station
And he never came back
They found his clothing
Scattered somewhere down the track
And he won’t be down on Wall Street in the morning
He had a home
The love of a girl
But men get lost sometimes
As years unfurl
One day he crossed some line
And he was too much in this world
But I guess it doesn’t matter anymore”
Navajo Nation
The original plan, before I got sidetracked by Salt Lake City, was this. I was just doing it in reverse. From Winslow, you take the scenic route up through the Navajo Nation to Moab. The only way I can describe the drive through the Navajo Nation is a full emptiness.
All states I have driven through have their empty lands, miles and miles of nothing except scrub, fencing, and the occasional cow. It’s just empty. The Nation was like that as well, but it had a presence to it. It was as if if I stopped, someone would appear from nowhere to greet me and welcome me. Behind the fences were horses instead of cows and they were beautiful. Here and there, nice, kept houses and farms would appear along with schools. Driving through, I felt something akin to the “Aloha” I feel in Hawai’i. A gentle spirit, that if you are open to it, you can be a guest.
I have heard nothing but wonderful things about the Navajo people and hope to go back one day and meet them.
I didn’t stop for too many pictures except for lunch. It was all the GoPro during that long drive up Route 191, back to Moab, Utah. The windows were down and the heat felt good. I eventually found myself back in Moab. Moab, Utah is at the top of the list of my favorite places I’ve been to. It was very different here than from the two months ago I was last year. The 107 degree heat was down to high 80’s and low 90’s. Season was in, and the hotel I had before cost me almost three times the amount from the last time. The guy recognized me. I tried the “but I was here helping out when you first reopened!” It got me a little discount. But with the crowds and prices, I knew I was only going to stay the one night. I also knew I’d be back when the temperatures were high again to chase away the people and the prices were low.
Take it Easy

The Drive