Maybe travelers are being more choosy about their destinations now as I always said that traffic was near null. Not so while passing by Bryce Canyon on the way to Lake Penguitch and Cedar Breaks. Everybody goes to Bryce Canyon and it is 18 miles of an incredible burst out of the Earth filled with colors and shapes one would not expect to suddenly see. The same applies for Cedar Breaks and the 5 miles of scenic road through its high country. But Cedar Breaks is different in so many ways. The altitude hovering around 10,500 feet applies as a cleansing space to all the senses. Being 60 now and having had my 5 bypass surgery at the age of 47, blame it on that good food (!!!) I am always a bit apprehensive at high altitude, same in airplanes, a space I truly dislike and find unnatural to be in… But I have been feeling great at such heights and I actually dare to say even better than at low altitude unless it is my imagination playing games with my mind!
All is green up there, the smells are pungent, off the spruce, cedar trees and 1600 year old bristle-cone pines, the fields which are a yearly theatre for the many flower species showing off their colors. The bristle-cone pine trees living at all always seem to be short of a miracle considering that they grow only in forsaken spots where water is scarce, soil is thin and fierce winds always blowing. They are like the guards of the Earth on these slopes sometimes as white as snow protecting the monumental change into the bright colors of Cedar Breaks. I always imagine the first Pioneers that came through on their horses or on foot, through miles and miles of greenery as we ourselves rode, and suddenly awaken by such wonders, probably frozen in their steps… what was their thoughts? Was it of spirituality as civilization had not developed yet into the advanced stages we are in right now? Did they look up the skies and thanked their Gods absorbing it all as maybe a message laid out in front of them? Did they try to hike down those steep hills and touch it all? Maybe establish their temporary homes amongst those formidable Hoodos?
There are a few view points along the road. They were quiet, only a couple cars passing by and stopping at times making the experience of it all as a private showing. I keep taking pictures, many pictures as every stop was showing off a different angle of the wonders below me, they are just pictures however as I myself look at them able to feel them and thinking for the viewer that they themselves need to experience those photos as they are only the beginning threshold of the moment. A tease to entice being a true witness of it all. They are all those outings and adventures, truly memories that stay embedded for ever. As we have been on the road a while now, I look through the present archives and regardless of my reasons to be on the road, I do feel fortunate to have visited all the destinations that are titled on those chapters week after week. More and more there is an acceptance of faith and destiny through this Life we are living, the natural wonders have accepted it and are still present for others to witness, our choice also I feel can only be with the same acceptance and surmount day after day the two opposites that so often constantly collide, the good and the bad…
I so much would like to see a winter here. I have seen photos of above and past places with the snow blanketing the red rocks and the contrast is so truly magical covered at that time of the year by that harsh but beautiful element. They are rough times as I inquired with the locals. Many days in the 20’s lasting six month… we would never survive! Who knows, maybe someday we might have the opportunity to come and visit in an enclosed vehicle.
The return route was the same. I had originally planned to do a southern route, but after meeting the flat tire I had decided not to chance it through a construction zone that might have poured "chipped seal" on the road. Since I have only one plug left myself after helping others, more than one flat would be detrimental to our… well being!
The next day was Farmer’s Market Day in Boulder. I love Farmer’s Markets, all those fresh vegetables and maybe fruit as last year when in Halfway, Oregon. I like to get there right when they are ready to sell, sometimes the quantities are very limited. I remember always being half an hour early in Halfway as not to miss the little tasty wild wood strawberries! I can still taste them. The skies had changed with ribbons of distant rain all around us. Cool temps at that time of the morning, and yet the sun managing to peak at times in between the scarce openings in the clouds and send us some rays as to show us the way. Nine o’clock Boulder time meant plenty of time to stop and snap some pictures on this Hwy #12 that we have ridden so many times, seemingly always however different as a brand new spectacle.
Isn’t Life itself just a large panoramic photo?… could be. It scares me sometimes how much I can see around us in our space. The most benign scene, or color or shape suddenly takes on a form of its own. What was a blur long ago today demands my scrutiny almost with every square inch that passes by. I am in battle at times when with a nice tail wind as the day ends and need to get to camp, not to stop for dozens of more pictures as the riding itself fills me up with a pleasure unparalleled still over these past… 50 years! No… and no… I tell myself as the engine purrs with no effort as if Mother Nature with her forces from behind us is actually helping us on our path. The choices gives us the best of both worlds all day through these roads acquiring so much more of a meaning to me these past weeks.
I was right about Boulder time, only a couple tables were being set up as I was told that the past weather has been really hard on the harvests. No fruit… a couple cucumbers, some interesting greens and also some multicolor green beans. I cannot do hot peppers, so that was out and my favorite, home grown tomatoes were absent. I tried I felt, and the ride in itself was well worth the moments. As I was leaving I remembered to take some pictures as the tables after all were of colorful designs…
And as I suddenly was turning around, a familiar face came into the viewer… "the Governess…", filling me up with much anticipation of having finally a photo of her. Quick bracketing and I was done as I did not want to push my luck, one never knows the reaction of others when being photographed without being asked. Our passing by each other was very cordial, I could not help however in my most serious tone, as almost involuntary the words came out "And how is the Governess doing today…" . Without hesitation of even a blink of an eye, almost as satisfied from the reverence of her title with a much respectful inclination she replied "just fine… and how are you and Spirit doing these days". It was small talk making this trip even more worthwhile… just another scene in the comedic aspect of our Life.
So well, we are today waiting for my Friends from Denver, Tomas which I have not seen in years and his soul mate Marianne. With his bike in the shop they are coming by car. Will see what plans we will make and where they would like to go these coming couple days.
T-Shirts on sale inventory, they are at my cost… would hate to use them for rags… $20 each including mailing. Please e mail me first.
With the "ADV" (Adventure Rider") logo: 3 XXL ~ 5 XL ~ 2 L ~ 5 M ~
Plain: 2 XXL ~ 4XL ~ 5L ~ 1 M ~ 2 S
Till next time….
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Ara Gureghian 853 Vanderbilt Beach Rd #245 Naples, Fl 34108
Ara & Spirit