Overland Expo days. AZ

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

“On the day when the weight deadens on your shoulders and you stumble,may the clay dance to balance you.
And when your eyes freeze behind the grey window and the ghost of loss gets in to you,
may a flock of colours, indigo, red, green, and azure blue come to awaken in you a meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays in the currach of thought and a stain of ocean blackens beneath you,
may there come across the waters a path of yellow moonlight to bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours, may the clarity of light be yours, may the fluency of the ocean be yours, may the protection of the ancestors be yours.
And so may a slow wind work these words of love around you, an invisible cloak to mind your life.”

"Beannacht" from ANAM CARA, © 1997 John O’Donohue.

Lake Powell  

Very powerful, much meaning and a deeper understanding of this Journey of ours are tonight some of the thoughts going through my mind while spending this last evening here at Overland Expo in Amado, AZ. Such an incredible array of Friends present, faces now matched to names read in the past and new ones which will not be forgotten. Adventure, Overlanding, vehicles of all sizes shapes and colors capable of escaping the black top, camping gear, gadgets and so much more. All was here. And yet regardless of it all, my own path lays ahead of us within a more mental aspect than ever. I now today have no doubts it is of a somehow unique one in it’s content and projection, inner and outer.

Lake Powell  
Lake Powell Lake Powell
Lake Powell  

I have been giving it all much thoughts as now for the first time witnessing others Journeys. From point A to point B seems to be the common aspect of so many as when even part of a discussion panel when the question "has your Journey brought any answers to any questions about Life?", one reply was… "if you think too much, answers will only lead to more questions". I was honestly taken back. The reply came from a certain gentleman called Ted Simon who has made his mark years ago by riding around the World as a Pioneer in his genre and since the sale of his books maybe has made him forgotten the true core of the path, or maybe wrongly so on my part, it was only of a physical 
Journey as he expressed to my dismay. So odd afterwards as many attendees came to me with similar opinions toward a man considered “a big seller”. It is only an assessment I said, just as the many flavors of ice cream. 

South Rim Grand Canyon  
South Rim Grand Canyon South Rim Grand Canyon
South Rim Grand Canyon South Rim Grand Canyon

Is it maybe because I myself always see more in a ride, a moving along, spaces daily presenting themselves, never only the physical aspect of it all and get to live about it and consequently write about it, as still present in my days as a form of therapy for this Life of ours. We are not machines as the ones we ride or drive, it is that difference maybe that uniquely I like to express and maybe some like to forget. Not everyone, only some as myself wishing everybody would look beyond the metal and rubber and plastic that physically moves us through this beautiful land of ours. The “touch” however was there. So many otherwise deeply rooted from the bottom of our hearts conversations seeking to understand what the meaning of their own Journey had given birth to, as I was also so touched and moved hearing over and over as to how by nature we ourselves have touched many others Lives as truthfully they have touched ours.

South Rim Grand Canyon  
South Rim Grand Canyon  

We are however exhausted and as we left this morning, Monday, we only made it to Phoenix into a Motel room as, even depressing I find them to be, a real bed, showers and just rest from a deep exhaustion, both mental and physical will put us back in the shape needed to continue on north. This includes Spirit who his passed out. Our relationship was different these past days him being on a leash 24/7, and for the first time, or is it maybe I had not noticed before, separation anxiety attacks if left behind only for a few minutes. So yes, he was as usual the center of attention. I think everyone has now a photo of him, no doubt. He is a ham posing always for the cameras, he is a good person when meeting others, all is such a constant always reminder how fortunate we are having each others company.

South Rim Grand Canyon  
South Rim Grand Canyon South Rim Grand Canyon
South Rim Grand Canyon  

Out of our usual space it has been some memorable days. The sight of the vehicles capable to let anyone off the black top surpassed by the souls met capable themselves to take the minds off the beaten thoughts. We will be back next year as I will also be giving this time classes on how to cook “one pan” meals, healthy, fresh from local sources and quick on time hoping they will also create a good time amongst campers. The skies unfortunately did not cooperate too well throughout the event itself for photography and I think if I remember well, the one day with a blue ceiling was spend chatting too much thinking there will be more time later on. It truly is an event not to miss as I publicly lift my hat to Roseann Hanson and her crew for the display present these past days and her kindness toward us. I yet have many more photos to go through when time will allow it real soon.

South Rim Grand Canyon  
South Rim Grand Canyon  

Enjoy and be well, always.

Ara & Spirit

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9 Responses to “Overland Expo days. AZ”

  1. James Schipper Says:

    That looks like a fun event in a gorgeous place (adding to list of places to be when we get mobile). I’m glad you enjoyed yourself there. I would love to know more one-pan recipes. Using as little space, the fewest dishes and still being a great, filling meal would go a long way to making a life on the road (or under sail) feel less like we’re missing out on anything.

  2. D. Brent Miller Says:

    Ara, you and I could spend hours talking about Ted Simon’s response to the question about journeys, questions and answers about life. If I have interpreted correctly, I understand Ted’s response fully, and it doesn’t surprise me that others found that answer lacking. Ted is a journalist. Journalists are curious. We like to ask a lot of questions. We seek answers. I find that I always have more questions than answers. That’s why I travel. Taking travel to the next level of mindful travel or spiritual journey begins with questions, and even if the answers are elusive, there are always more questions. It’s a life-long quest. –Brent

  3. Voni Says:

    Wonderful quote to start this blog.

    Travel safely, friend.

    sMiling and off to Branson!

  4. Mary Says:

    Hi Ara,
    Awesome pictures as usual!
    and tell Spirit that it’s hard work being a photo star!

    Take care and I’m looking forward to seeing more of your photography.
    The weather did not cooperate any better in Honolulu, dark gray skies and much wind here meant very few photos. Poo.
    Your friend,

  5. Phil Golden Says:

    Ara – I want to publicly say what a wonderful twist of chance it was to meet you in person. But of course, and you can probably guess, I don’t believe in chance and that our meeting was arranged. Either way, to put a face with a name was a great reward for me personally. If I knew that the 40 hour drive would have resulted in only the time spent with you and Spirit, however short it was, I would leave again tomorrow.

    Hopefully, you, Spirit and my little family will have the opportunity to meet sometime and my invitation is as always, open.

    Be safe my friend. Ride like you are invisible. Please give Spirit a good ear scratchin’ for me.

    I will speak to you soon via email as we discussed.

    All the best,

  6. Karl Says:

    I met and talked with you at the Overland Expo. I enjoyed meeting you and Spirit. I also am riding for theraphy. We seem to view the world the journed as an adventure to be savored, explored, appreciated and looked upon in wonderment. Have a good journey to the Grand Canyon and beyond.


  7. Elzi Says:

    My comments were going to be nearly a duplicate of Brent’s. Questions and answers are the yin/yang; they come full circle, always circling and dancing, one leading the other, then trading places. That is what life is about. In essence, traveling is the Yin and Yang in motion; dynamic, in flux, and never ending.

    Ted is mostly right. The enjoyment and indeed, the concomitant growth which sustains us, are both the questions and the answers. One drives the other.
    However, just as many only wish to travel from A to B, to reach a goal and/or condition, they also want only answers. Too many questions leave them frustrated and unfulfilled. Whereas some of us thrive, maybe even feed, on they dynamic nature and motion of questions/answers.

    Perhaps only people who are truly travelers in the soul understand the nature of that. For some peoples, such as the Navajo, that is the philosophy of their life, cluture and thinking. Whereas sedentary peoples typically accept only one answer to every question. I truly believe that motion and questing are symbiotic. And maybe that is why I don’t offer any excuses when people ask why I can’t stay in one place for a long period of time 🙂

    Glad to hear you and Spirit are doing well. Take care.

  8. admin Says:

    I think for whatever reason into my own words what I have expressed in my entry has been wrongfully understood by Brent and Elzi.
    What I and others present at the panel of questions and answers only received as a message from Ted was to “NOT” ask “yourself” questions as questions will lead to answers and more questions. I really wanted to clarify this. With a shrug I also remember it was “who needs it…”.
    Of course as a Journalist maybe it is one way to travel leading to only “reporting” the outside world and never within.
    It is not a criticism, it was only an observation.
    Thanks and be well… Ara & Spirit

  9. Andre Shoumatoff Says:

    Hi Ara,
    I have of course been looking at your photos for days and they are just great. Thanks again for making the trip old friend. Also that blue jug has already come in good handy…

    best, Andre

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