Slowly, back on the path… TX

Saturday, April 16th, 2016

“You never know what’s around the corner. It could be everything. Or it could be nothing. You keep putting one foot in front of the other, and then one day you look back and you’ve climbed a mountain.”
― Tom Huddleston –

But it is always something…

Written at “The Oasis”, photos from the road…


At "The Oasis", one more night...

Mother Nature’s gift today is a lot of windy hot air! The final steps and chores on the way for our departure North are taking place including sadly enough leaving Old Faithful behind, battery removed and at a Friend’s house to be on a trickle charger. Poor Soul, it is as she is on artificial life support. She is! Today is a taste of how summer “will be” here and us spoiled with always cool weather feel fortunate we are headed out soon. We have been here six months. Seems at times like six days and at other times like six years. As much as there are parts of it I do not want to remember, I have to come to terms with the fact that surgery was a necessity and even if two months later pain subsides, it is of a healing pain and a better frame of mind looking forward “to go”. As always.


Dr said it all looks good! Good hardware.

I am glad to have been smart enough [it happens!] to have taken steps ahead of the surgery as to live afterwards without lifting anything over ten pounds. A 120 gallon propane bottle which they fill at 80% meaning 94 gallons, roughly the equivalent of 24 bottles. A plus being the bottle is free and the propane is $1.84 a gallon versus $4. A Big Berkey filter for drinking water from our rain water catchment. So sweet I am now spoiled with it. No more going to Terlingua and fill up 3 gallon jugs coming out of an ugly black hose at 10 cents a gallon. Nothing left to lift! Or so I thought… Reason for one good Friend always stopping by to check on us as Life off the grid has always a surprise or two… that needs lifting. We did ride a couple of times to the mailbox which is two miles away. One has to steer while riding a sidecar versus counter steering when riding a motorcycle. Steering uses back muscles. I concentrated on only using my arms and yet paid the price that same evening and the next day. Not much of a choice leaving our third member behind. She probably herself needs the rest.


A few miles into Colorado before Utah.

As it happens every year we are ready to leave and at the same time not! We love it here. Undisturbed silence besides the wind, the birds and some ground owls. The company of Lance and my Mother are, should I say, comforting even if we cry, laugh, talk and throw rocks together. Spirit is Mr Freedom on these acres. He knows the boundaries and this season did not escape as he generally does once a year after at one point when already far away turns his head and says “good bye… see you later!” He had surgery on his nose a few weeks back and now a pink healing spot is appearing amidst his gray hair which almost matches mine. He has not slowed down however as I have wishing I had his energy. It will come, I know it will. A final X-ray and Dr’s visit on Wednesday will tell a lot about the outcome of this spine surgery I do not wish on anyone unless really needed. I still at time cannot believe I did it.
I am not going to hide it. It was rough! Both physically and mentally. I don’t know which one was worse. There is not much one can do afterwards while only take a few steps here and there and lay down hoping for a comfortable position for some sleep which sometimes would not come. All mixed in with much frustration and even depression while constantly repeating to myself which sometimes would help and at other times not, “it is what it is… this too shall pass. There is always someone worse off.”


The Beehive South of Moab, Utah.

The bag of thoughts has been filling up. Thinking to me means writing or conversating. Some conversating, yes, with a good Friend who rode his motorcycle from California to stay with us for a week. Those were not my best days but with his outmost respect for my physical shape [dilemna?] we mostly stayed here, talked and cooked. The short paths of thoughts seems to have always ended up at an intersection with stop signs on both sides. Redundant thoughts. Same thoughts I have been carrying for these past twelve years. Answers of questions which will never materialize while the “it is what it is” often does not let me rest in Peace. It is an amazing fact that “time” has no bearing on some aspects of Life. As an expression from a Friend I have also pronounced in the past “the waves never stop, we just learn to surf better”. And I have. I have become a decent surfer on this Ocean of Life. I don’t think one can ever turn Pro but one can for sure try. That is when being on the road helps as rare are the dull moments when the gears of the mind suddenly disengage creating a mental chaos which at times makes me wonder “what in the World am I doing here?”. 


Wilson's Arch also South of Moab, Utah.

And where are we going after my Dr’s visit in Midland? I have no idea while the only step I take is to watch the weather ahead of us. Will Valley of the Gods, Muley Point, Recaptured Pocket all in Southern Utah be cool enough for us? Or will we have to head up towards the elevations of Colorado? Wyoming? Montana? Maybe Canada? I am pulled towards “The Lost Coast” in Northern Califonia. That serene and quiet beach with its driftwoods washed ashore standing up as monuments of time. I am thinking that maybe I want to be a bit more urban this time around. Not meaning big cities but villages. The bigger cities will be for food! I miss good ingredients including exotic ones. I miss a good Sushi! Villages, little towns, they all generally have an outdoor cafe and some interesting locals who each have a story to tell. Everyone has a story.


Drone flying for some new upcoming videos.

Stay well, Ara and Spirit…

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8 Responses to “Slowly, back on the path… TX”

  1. Nancy Says:

    Back and joint surgery behind me, leaving with a new trailer (old one gone–thought I’d never walk again much less travel) after my granddaughter’s wedding in June. Sadly, my Jack is no longer with me–another hole in my heart–too big to fill as are the others. My hope is that your back keeps healing-the pain will probably never completely disappear, but it won’t approach the horrible pain before your surgery–at least that’s my experience and I hope it is your, Ara. Love and pays to Spirit. Treasure your moments with him. He is not ‘just a dog” as so many people think. Enjoy the cool weather wherever you find it.

  2. Randy Says:

    Great you’re about to head out. 9 weeks on my left knee which is doing great but only 3 on the right. It will be a while yet before I can head out. Zelda I think is antsy and is taking our truck camper out on her own soon but only for a week. Looks like I’ll be following the both of you.

  3. Zelda Says:

    Safe travels, Ara & Spirit!

  4. Wil Says:

    Happy to read “youse guys” are recovering from ailments. Never fun to be laid up. Have had my own setbacks the past few years, so admire your spirit. Hope you find what you seek. California has always been too expensive for my wallet. Southern Oregon and Northern Washington coasts were more to my liking, but that was late summer/early autumn. I’ve never dealt with Oregon’s summer crowds.

    Safe travels and happy landings.

  5. Bill Says:

    Good to see you back online and wish you well on your journey this summer.

  6. sandy r Says:

    So good to see your post and hear your thoughts for the future – healing, eating and traveling. this too has passed – and the future is very promising. Getting on the road will be good for your heart and soul. Be well ( and be careful of that back!!)

  7. Don McGilvray Says:

    Ara ~ It is good to see you posting again! Your trevails with back problems would be enough to slow anyone down… Glad that is behind you now!
    As much as you hate leaving Old Faithful behind this time, she will be faithfully waiting your return, and your mending back will be much better off in your four wheeler for this trip.

    I know the decision to have, or NOT have surgery can be daunting… been there, done that, got the T shirt! Other times lady luck doesn’t give us a choice, and it’s surgery whether or not we like it! I hope your decision to have your back worked on will leave you pain-free in the neat future.

    Keeping good thoughts for both you and Spirit!

    If your trip happens to bring you to Eastern Washington State, drop me an e-mail, so we can get together! I am in the Spokane, WA area, and know of many nice, scenic and relaxing day trips… some really “twisty ones” too, but that can wait for another time after your back is ready for it!

    Be Safe out there!

  8. texascindy Says:

    Looking forward to your next entry. I know they will be less frequent but always interesting. Hope you are doing well on this next leg of your journey.
    Safe travels as always, my friend. Cindy

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