Mexico is our safe place. That sweet spot we head to when we need to heal weary minds and hearts. When Jim’s sister passed away in 2003 we found solace in Mazatlan. When my mom passed away in 2005 we almost immediately grabbed Ron & Dario and headed to Puerto Vallarta. This fall, rather than take the planned drive around the USA, we knew that a couple of months renewing on the beaches of Baja was what was called for.
As we made the long trip from Camp to Utah and Nevada towards Oregon we were greeted with some of the most astonishing cloud formations we had ever seen. The skies daily offered up a stunning mix of clouds and sun brightening everything around us. Reminding us that life has ups and downs and sunshine and rain but is ever resilient.
“Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky” ~ Rabindranath Tagore
At Bryce National Park a cloudy day rendered just enough sun and contrast to further enhance this awe-inspiring natural beauty.
Those words, from one of my favorite songs, is an apt description of much of our life and wanderings. A season ending in Baja transforms into a season beginning at camp. Now, as the leaves begin a color kaleidoscope transformation all their own, our seasons will soon recycle and renew as well.
Back at camp in Idaho, the idea of “home” has been on our minds of late. Jim’s parents still ask when we’re “coming home”. We frequently find ourselves in conversations with strangers where they ask where home is. There is no real clear-cut answer. Our official residency, for now, is Portland. We live half of the year in Idaho and half elsewhere. The majority of those we meet simply can not comprehend the idea of a semi-nomadic existence.
It’s official. The time has come to say goodbye to Tequila, our much-loved truck camper. As reported last fall, when we made a commitment to Camp CDA for the next few years we decided to move into trailer life with Taco, our Lance travel trailer. Tequila spent the winter cozy and safe undercover in town but now has once again emerged in order to move onto a new home.
Joshua Tree National Park is a treasure. From our first visit two years ago the memories of the spectacular scenery has stayed with us. As the plan for our route north diverged, as they tend to do, the parks of Utah were not to be this time around but that didn’t mean we were going to miss out on Joshua Tree.
It all started with an ottoman. A broken brake fiasco south of Mulege had us pulling into Playa Santispac rather than our beloved Playa Coyote beach. We generally think of Santispac as a place for “big rigs” and all of those who want easy access to Mexico 1 rather than those seeking a bit of peace and quiet. No matter. A night on any one of the scenic beaches of Bahia Concepcion is a dream.
We decided to leave the brake fix until the next morning and then I saw it. The tall blond woman in the RV just down from us had an ottoman. A real life, straight out of a living room, ottoman that she was resting her feet on while reading her book next to the sea. A wave of envy washed over me.
As we prepared to leave Los Barriles northbound we started asking THE question that was a concern for all of us who wintered south of the border; Return to the United States on Mexico1 – that narrow hell of potholes the size of VW Bugs, speeding truck drivers, and winding miles, or take on the as of yet still unfinished Mexico 5 where 22 miles can take hours?
I think I’ve lost track of how many such posts I’ve done. These past 27 months have found us in dozens and dozens of campgrounds across Mexico and the Western United States and feature everything from boondocking beach camps to $100/night RV parks.
We had planned on heading north via Arizona and Utah. Well, plans changed and Oregon was on the radar but we knew what we didn’t want to do was repeat the same route that we have traveled too many times over the last couple of years. By taking the border at Mexicali and heading down some back roads we effectively missed all of the dreaded San Diego/ LA/ San Francisco traffic. We also made a point of trying out some new spots along the way. Camp CDA research and all 🙂