Kingman, AZ greeted us this morning with a pretty decent downpour. We took our time waking up from a refreshing sleep in a comfortable bed and found our way to the "full hot breakfast" included in our room price. I wouldn't stay there just for the opportunity to eat the breakfast, but it wasn't bad. After showers, sending a few emails, and addressing a few postcards, we checked out, just after the noon check-out time. Next was fueling up, and then we were on our way for Day 2 of our cross country trek.
|Rainy Drive Day AZ|
|Kingman, AZ Police Car|
The rain had subsided to a mere threat by the time we'd been on the road about an hour. For most of the rest of the day we ran parallel to the rain, knowing it was only a matter of time before we'd be in the rain again. A few times Joe had to deal with the drizzle on the windshield with a few slaps of the windshield wipers. It was a fairly quiet, perfectly comfortable ride, in the passenger seat of the 16 foot box truck.
|Windshield Wipers Slappin' Time|
Near the New Mexico border, my comfortable ride through the drizzle melded with Janis Joplin's voice of yesteryear as the radio offered up her rendition of "Me and Bobby McGee." I looked ahead at the dramatic skyline, the variety of colors and shapes of mountains against clouds and skies.
I looked to my right and watched a train making its way westward along the track running parallel to the Rt. 40 on which we were heading eastward. I looked to my left and saw Joe, eyes on the road, with the dramatic sky behind him causing him to appear silhouettish in my view. And I thought how very comfortable and happy I was at that moment.
|Dramatic Sky Silhouette|
There were the requisite "crazies" on the road, to be sure. I have certainly seen some interesting maneuvers by semi-truck drivers, and by drivers of little cars who seem oblivious to the world around them.
|Truck on Left was seriously "all over the road"|
|Trucks, Trucks, and More Trucks|
I saw an elk that appeared to be sitting comfortably on the shoulder of the highway, but who, in reality, was undoubtedly in excruciating pain. For I also saw the police car, lights a-blazing, speed past us to the site, just beyond the elk, where two cars, hoods dented, rested after their encounter with the elk. And I saw the patrolman, as he walked past the wrecked vehicles to the poor elk... I did not witness the inevitable, but hope the elk was put out of his pain quickly. Despite the fact that Joe and I ALWAYS have our cameras ready for the most mundane action, neither of us managed to capture a shot of ANY of that.
As we neared the New Mexico border, the sun was setting and we were ready to stop for supper. We decided on a truck stop in Gallup, NM.
|Sunset, approaching Gallup, NM|
We enjoyed a relaxed meal, despite the charming "screaming, spoon pounding" baby who entertained herself as her parents took full advantage of the "all you can eat" offerings....seemingly oblivious to the irritation the child was causing to other patrons. One by one, others gave up and left, probably sooner than they'd have ordinarily. But we managed to outstay the child, as her parents did eventually have their fill and the threesome left. The food was decent and the break from driving a needed one.
We just passed by Albuquerque, NM, rolling through the night toward our eventual destination, back home in VA. We share the road with the semis at night and cannot enjoy the beautiful views of the landscape, but we make reasonable time, even in this heavily laden truck. And, we will get to see the sunrise in another state tomorrow, as we do not plan to make another hotel stop until tomorrow afternoon.
It's been a good day, and has held some exceptionally good moments, when past and present melded together in the perfect setting....with those windshield wipers slappin' time.........
|Trucks in Rain|
|Dramatic AZ Skies|
|Smokestack -- Cloud Competition|
|New Mexico Sunset|