Going to Kansas

March 21, 2010

The light in the desert is like no other. It is almost a pinkish brown color as it bounces off the rocks. Arizona is such a stark and yet beautiful face. I can understand how those that have come through here have been so taken by it.

Of course it is just one of the states to travel through in the next days. I haven’t been out of Northern California in three years. As the north coast is beautiful and raw in its own right, there is just nothing like the southwest.

I always wondered about the pioneers and the natives and how they learned to adapt to life here, because, let’s face it, this not a tame place. Blazing hot summers, super cold winters, very little surface water for drinking and bathing.

I wish I could paint what I could see like Georgia. I loved her landscapes, but that was New Mexico, and this is Arizona. Deserts and mountains that seem to stretch on for days, and yet there is Flagstaff- right in the middle of a National Forrest.

How many days on the road now? Left No. Cal, Saturday night, First night in Williams, 2nd in Bakersfield, 3rd, in Barstow,4th in Kingman and now the 5th, in Holbrook. Tomorrow will be in Albuquerque.

I 40 is an amazing piece of human engineering. It stretches from Barstow, CA to Wilmington, NC. 2300 miles long, 4 lanes of black top through mountain and desert, planes, grasslands….

By the way, why is that barren landscape in Southern California known as the high desert, when AZ and NM are just as arid, and yet higher in elevation?

Why write this epic? Why travels have way across the country? The answer is to make a fresh start. California is in trouble. Its politics are a mess, the economy is way down, no jobs to speak of, not even seasonal help again this year. My former home has an official unemployment rate of 16%. What some don’t know is that number only represents the people who get the unemployment insurance. This number doesn’t represent the number actually looking for work. So in Lake County, CA, I my guess am that it is closer to 25% out of work.

I don’t know if KC will be any different, but jobs are being posted and the various job boards there, housing costs are lower, and moving back to a more populated area means more and hopefully better services. At least we will have a more choices in restaurants when we have money to go out to eat.

The sun is setting now; the light is changing from gold to golden pink to purple. Yes I will miss  the western sky…


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