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“Life has no remote. Get up and change it yourself”
The Oasis is already behind us by probably a thousand miles, probably more. From Midland, after my final Dr’s visit, it has been kind of a quick moving on North. I think the timing was right even if 36 degrees this morning while at some Dear Friends house we have not seen in too long. The suburbs of Salt Lake City. A few more errands, meaning fixing this and that, it happens every time we leave and then on eventually to relax and take in what Mother Nature will offer us. The weather has been much rain, hail and snow on the few summits we crossed. Such a sudden change from Southern Texas. Hopefully some blue skies with puffy clouds all conductive to some new photos and videos are ahead.
We have done these roads so many times throughout these past years, all is the same yet this time around for reasons I cannot discern all looked and felt different. It has been as a new slide show was developing in front of me. Maybe I was looking in the past but did not see. Passed Midland, Northern Texas, the vast lands went on for miles with only hundreds of oil rigs some pumping the black gold and others resting probably on a timer. Nothing else but its smell. We crossed into New Mexico and more vast lands with their infinite horizons. Who owned these lands? How could that be? half a million acres, a million acres, so much room but no one present. I have no doubt that their owners paid for such land or maybe inherited while it passing through generations and yet images of busy cities with their occupants crammed in apartments braving daily traffic more often than not at a crawl was on my mind. The other side of the coin. Such an unbalance.
We then crossed into Native American Reservations through an invisible border with no signs and the poverty, the garbage, the junk laying around, all turned into an uncomfortable sight. Dwellings all the same for miles on end, not a single paved road leading, rusty cars and trucks laying around, identical satellite dishes all on the same roofs, laundry drying being the only stamps acknowledging their differences. Such poverty, such lives most living without power or even running water. For some reason again through a thought of unbalance it took me back towards the times when I worked and catered to millionaires and billionaires in their homes so opulent having always thought being so much over the top, especially when the occupants happened to be only a couple with their little dog!
Hitchhikers lined the shoulders. Maybe they did not have a car because of DUI’s or maybe too poor to fix one of the many of their own parked for ever all around their dwellings, weathered and slowly changing color taking on the bare metal hues with hints of brown from the rust slowly forming. The few gas stations we passed had metal bars on all their windows and gates ahead of their doors. I realized that even being off the grid in Big Bend we down there live better. I am sure there are answers and reasons, yet I could not comprehend what I was seeing. We then on started going through small villages, small towns. Nine out ten businesses boarded up, some with for sale signs but most just abandoned while rarely seeing a pedestrian. The decline of the small communities and their youth most likely drawn to the big cities where the jobs are and maybe a promising paycheck.
The stage was somber I must say. Depressing. What will happen in another 50 years? 100 years? All will I think just rot yet will not diseaper. Monuments of past wealth maybe, businesses doing well in past times now swallowed by the Walmarts and Costcos present in the not too far big cities. Big cities as we are now parked for a few days, big cities where we have already been caught in incredible [to me!] traffic jams while going just a few miles in an hour to be able to eat out for a change. It has to effect everyone surrounding me while they tapping on the steering wheels even if occupied on their cell phones while trying to drive. Always a reassuring sight seeing that modern convenience glued to their ears!
It won’t be long until we are “out of here” and camp on the vasts BLM and National Forests lands with maybe a neighbor miles away as we both like it. Lands where once again silence will prevail, where sunrises and sunsets again will take on a different meaning unobstructed from roofs and power lines. It won’t be long! Patience. One more repair this week as from Utah we have crossed into Colorado through more summits and much snow.
Ara and Spirit