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Unbelievable that two people and their camping/travel gear could fill up an entire rented mini van!

About a year ago when we contemplated the approach of our 20th wedding anniversary, Tim and I threw around wildly ambitious ideas. A trip to Italy or Paris? South American adventure? An Alaskan cruise?

But as the date actually approached, we realized although we still wanted an adventure perhaps something a little easier on the pocketbook was in order. A road trip adventure including just the two of us – for the first time since Rosie was born – seemed to promise romance and adventure.

So – here we are on Day Two into our road trip through parts of the Southwest.

Goals:  visit as many hot springs as possible, travel across Highway 50 in Nevada, visit at least one of those national parks in Utah I’ve heard so much about, get in plenty of relaxation and some hiking through country we’ve never seen, and spend a few days visiting our dear friend Kathleen in Gold Hill, Colorado up in the Rocky Mountains above Boulder.

Along with Kathleen, we will have the chance to visit her three sons (all of whom I still have trouble picturing as grown men since their childhood faces continue to intrude on the vision) and their father, Paul.

The plan is to do all of this in two weeks. This should have been Day 3, but due to so many work and other obligations we did not manage to actually hit the road until 6 p.m. on Tuesday – so that doesn’t count as Day One.

The healing powers of hot water

We’re off to a great start – unwinding at Sierra Hot Springs – soaking up that hot water and letting all the cares fall away. I can already feel my shoulders descending and the limbs loosening.

Our first camp - Sierra Hot Springs

Of course it didn’t feel like such a great start that first evening when, after we’d pulled into a motel only a few hours from home, we opened up the back door of our rented van and both food boxes tumbled into the dark parking lot. Unbeknownst to us they’d shifted during the drive. Broken glass, spilled red wine and tea littered the asphalt. Fortunately, the jar of honey remained intact.

Tomorrow after some morning soaks, it’s off to hit Highway 50 – often called the loneliest road in America. We’re playing it by ear, no idea where we’ll land for the night, although Tim is hoping to find this old-timey hotel he once stayed in with friends during some long ago Dead Show road trip.

We’ll see. Further adventures await!

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