01. Blue, 3 days before the move. He does not like the boxes.
02. Saying goodbye to the Mommies: Pauline, Kim, me, Rachel, and Amy (from left to right)
03. Kim helps the kids sign a t-shirt for Noah. This is the best shirt Noah has ever owned. It is treasured.
04. We will miss all our friends at Lipscomb Elementary School. I am both excited and nervous about going to a new school.
05. Thanks for all the memories and laughter!
06. Old friends, Audrey and Claire, saying goodbye.
07. My front wheel, the first casualty of the move. No, that’s not a scratch, it’s a crack. Thiis wheelset has sentimental value that cannot be replaced. I am sick about this.
08. The Angeles Family – Dave, Becky and Baby Annabelle. Becky was the first “Fast Girl” I met when I started riding bikes. Dave is a beast but has also been the knight in shining lycra for the ladies on the Sunday ride.
09. Mason and Rachel, hope to see the Franz family soon.
10. The Franz girls, whom we will all miss. Claire has been Audrey’s best friend since we came to Dallas two and a half years ago.
11. Keith and Karen Hester, whom I miss already. Karen lived in Sausalito for many years and has been a great resource during this move. And Keith…Keith could always make me smile. I’ve never met anyone who could ride a bike and talk as much as he can.
12. This is probably the last “Charles’ Harem” shots that I’ll be in, which makes me sad. I don’t know why Bryan Reid is in the photo….hmmm…
13. Man, I’m going to miss riding with these guys!
14. Erin. I had managed not to be sad until it was time to say goodbye to Erin and Charles. But when I hugged Erin I started crying. I am going to miss her very much.
15. Robert Mapes, who will always be one of my favorite people on the planet. He is such an amazing person, with a unique perspective on life that one only gets after dying. I will miss our talks.
16. The truck, loaded and ready to roll. Brian is smiling still. That’s only because we haven’t even left our block.
17. Two cars, one truck, two kids, one dog…must be ready. It’s too bad all our stuff didn’t fit in the truck.
18. Goodbye, House. I’m sad to leave this house but our future is West.
19. Are we there yet?! (We haven’t left our block.) Anytime the kids complained during the trip about being uncomfortable, I’d say, “Just look at the poor dog!” and they’d say, “Poor Bluey!” And that was the end of it. (Except for Blue, who was pretty uncomfortable.)
20. First rest stop, Decatur Texas. Run and jump, kids! We’ve had our first mechanical problem. A safety latch ont he trailer is broken. We call Penske, they say “Rig it.” Awesome. We do but now have to stop every 100 miles to check it.
21. Day 1, sun setting in Childress Texas. We had hoped to be in Albuquerque NM by the end of the day today. I don’t think we’re going to make it. We’re not even out of Texas yet and we’ve been driving all day.
22. At the end of Day 1 Brian carried Noah and Audrey upstairs to the hotel room in Tucumcari, New Mexico.
23. After carrying both kids upstairs, Brian had to carry the dog. Blue has never lived anywhere with stairs and he refused to go upstairs to the room. Poor dog!
24. The start of Day 2, Tucumcari, New Mexico. We had hoped to be in Albuquerque but are making slower-then-anticipated progress.
25. This stretch of Route 66 just east of Albuquerque is the land that time forgot. There is so much poverty here it is shocking.
26. Day 2, We spend the night in Flagstaff AZ and while driving out of town the morning of Day 3, we see a huge fire raging in the ponderosa pine forest that surrounds Flagstaff. I’ve had some weird mojo with fires this year. Please don’t folllow me to California!
27. Rest stop outside of Kingman, AZ Day 3. With our luck the kids will rouse a poisonous insect and feed it to the dog.
28. It’s been a while since I’ve been to the Mojave Desert. It is very beautiful here.
29. Fortunately we all make it out of the desert without encountering anything poisonous.
30. Day 3, driving through the Mojave National Preserve towards California. Progress has been S-L-O-W but I’m glad it’s daytime so we can enjoy the beautiful landscapes.
31. California Border Checkpoint, making sure ew don’t bring a plague of fireants to California.
32. Barstow, as the sun sets on Day 3 we are hoping to get to Fresno but miss our gas station exit. Trying to turn around, we get the truck stuck in a sandbank and the children learn some fun new vocabulary words. After losing a few hours waiting for the tow truck, we make it Bakersfield for the night.
33. Day 4, after leaving Bakersfield CA we begin the drive north on I-5 through the dust bowl. Bleak, depressing, and impoverished this land is ripe with controversy.
34. The wind farms along I-580 are a welcome change from the devastated farmlands of Caliifornia’s Central Valley.
35. Outside Dublin, California I notice how the car is positioned on the trailer. Brian popped several curbs at the last rest stop and now the car is sideways on the trailer, with the rear wheel about an inch away from falling entirely off the trailer. Tired, hungry and eager to get to our new home, we leave it as is and proceed carefully.
36. The interchange on I-580 is confusing and Brian and I both take different wrong turns. Exhausted, I am panicked and break down, sobbing to Brian through the walkie talkie until he is out of range and I lose his signal. The kids assure me everything will be okay but they look anxious. Rarely ever have they seen Mommy cry.
37. The Bay Bridge, as seen from Treasure Island…which is NOT the bridge I should have seen on this trip. But when I pull on to Treasure Island to turn around I stop to snap this photo and breath…then laugh. The kids are right, it will be alright. Almost there.
38. When we pull up to the house I am glad we did not arrive when Brian did. He has spent the last 30 minutes with the movers trying to get my car backed off of the trailer. Difficult with the rear wheel being so close to the edge and at such an angle.
39. The kids and I leave the men to monkey with the car while we go inside to see our house for the first time. The kids approve. So do I.
40. When the movers finally get the truck unpacked it is Thursday night. Garbage collection is early Friday morning which means we have to clear the road for the garbage trucks. Awesome. I’m too tired to be helpful so I call my parents. Earlier that day my mom had hip surgery but she sends Daddy over to help Brian find a place to stash the truck for the night.
41. Ignoring advice to access the main road by continuing up the hill, Brian decides to drive the truck and trailer around this hairpin turn. The trailer hitch fails and comes completely separated from the truck and gets wedged in the little valley between hills.
Tah-dah! Trainer skewer to the rescue yet again. We lift, drag and push the trailer to a spot where we can align it with the truck and get it rigged back together. Unfortunately it doesn’t hold and we have to call for a roadside mechanic, who replaces the a few parts and gets us on our way….two hours later. By now we decide that it doesn’t matter what Penske charges for refueling, we are returning this truck immediately, no stopping for gas, no stopping for anything. Just get it gone!
42. Finally! The drive is over, the truck is gone and life can return to normal…..which one of these boxes did I pack my life in, anyway?