roadtrip, phase 1

Wow, we’ve been so busy that we haven’t had time to post anything! There’s been a ton of transit, last minute gear acquisition/tweaking, and visiting with friends and loved ones that we haven’t had time to write it all. Currently we’re stopped in Anchorage for our last hour on US soil until we board a one-way ship to China. More on the ship later, we’re going to start this thing out by playing catch-up with the last couple of months.

Our flock (Heather, Scott, and Midori) finally left Austin with a car and a truck crammed full of stuff. First stop was Fort Worth where we dropped Heather’s truck off and spent plenty of quality time with Heather’s grandparents, parents, siblings, and other assorted family members. The visit wasn’t overly relaxing with a bunch of family medical stuff going on and temperatures spiking 110, but we both got a lot out of having an extended period of time to connect with family.

After two weeks around Fort Worth and reduced down to a single car filled to the brim, we set out west for California. Midori sat shotgun with Heather’s lap as shock absorption, and Scott drove most of the way. We had a two night stop in Amarillo where we got our stuff together after the chaos of bouncing between relatives’ homes. We even got some great Thailand tips from the owner of Thai Star, a local eatery.

Coming out of Texas we got crazy weather with 110 degree dry patches mixed with 60 degree thunderstorms. In Albuquerque we ended up shipping some more of our stuff because the car loads and unloads were getting irritating. There was also an inevitable REI stop and admiration of the xeriscaping along the freeways. We also had our first causality there: the iPad sadly got left on top of the car when we pulled out and run over and/or stolen.

In Flagstaff we greatly enjoyed the Beaver Street Brewery and the lovely downtown area then in the morning Scott ended up doing IT support for the local UPS store while Heather was sending out a family photo album project she’d been working on. Incidentally, by this point Days Inn had become our favored resting place because they have fabulous pet policies.

For our last pre-California stop we stayed at the quirky Atomic Inn in Beatty, NV, just outside of Death Valley. The drive between Vegas and there was totally surreal, we kept seeing strange ball lighting on either side of the freeway, some of which was vaguely over Area 51.

Expect more in the next couple of weeks to catch us up to our visit to California, the rest of our roadtrip, and our visit to Alaska! For now we’ll be holed up in a boat crossing the Pacific and our next stop is Japan.

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