1250 miles down the road, only 420 to go for this leg. This may be as long as the miles 🙂
We had a delightful stop in Phoenix. Josh, our grandson, was picking up his girlfriend, Rhoma, in Phoenix and called to see if we could meet for lunch at MIM. What grandparents could say no to that. After a delightful lunch in the MIM Cafe, they went on to run through some of the exhibits in two hours! while we devoted the same time to one room, the Dragons and Vines exhibit of wonderful inlay work on guitars and banjos. This is mostly contemporary work and now makes use of NC machines to be able to replicate the designs. After a break back at the coach for a bit we returned to MIM at 6:30 to meet Susan and Lee who were sponsors of the concert and had generously offered to provide us with tickets. Carol and I are sure they mixed the tickets and gave us their sponsor seats, center just behind the cross aisle about 4 rows from the stage. Anat Cohen and the Tres Brasileros were wonderful and we enjoyed the Brazilian Churros – the music not the food.
The next day we set off for Sedona. Well the Sedona area. A stop at the Red Valley Visitor Center yielded a map with good places to boon dock highlighted by the ranger. We set our selves up about two miles in on Forest Road 525. This is the Interstate of Forest Roads. it provides access to a couple of ruins and some housing on private land best reached via 525. The sites are primitive and getting level required some extra effort, but once there we were pleased to be paying nothing for gorgeous views and mostly quiet. We used the jeep to explore some of the primitive roads in the area ranging from good dirt which most any passenger car could handle to Jeep/ATV tracks requiring the use of low range 4×4. We concluded our time there with dinner at Asylum in Jerome with the Riddles from Jojoba Hills. We sat down at 6 and finally decided to vacate the table at 9.
That was Wednesday. Thursday found us driving up 89A to Flagstaff tp prepare for Josh’s graduation. 89A from Sedona to Flagstaff really is not meant for big motorhomes like ours. Carol negotiated the entire drive, seldom exceeding 30 mph on the narrow windy road. Rhoma and Josh joined us for dinner on the coach which I grilled – for the meat eaters. Friday Malena, Dan, Alexander and Corey drove up from Phoenix having landed there the night before. and we started the gathering on our coach. We all met at Copa Cafe for a lovely dinner and retired sort of early to prepare for an early departure to get seats for graduation starting at 10 AM. We were in place with seats for all before 9 AM. After the ceremony we drifted back to the coach where we had food, drink and dessert for all extending through the day and well into the evening. Between grilling and playing Frisbee and conversation I started preparing the coach for an early departure. The next 364 miles of our adventure. After we were down to dessert and conversation one of Josh’s professors, the one who oversaw his independent study, appeared and we settled in for some interesting discussion about education. Just in case I will leave that for private conversation. One thing I will note, we asked Joe how common it was for a student to undertake independent study at NAU Education. He said it is not part of the program and it required much effort on Josh’s part and presumably his to get the permissions to include it in his program. Not sure I remember the exact words, but he said a student like Josh is like dessert for him.
By 9:30 Sunday morning we were rolling East on I 40, next planned stop a small town east of Albuquerque, the home of BoondockersWelcome.com hosts. They opened the gate for us as we approached and provided us with a lovely level driveway to park in. As we were setting up Joe came out to invite us in for a drink. Spotting our prepared wine bottle, he told not to bring it in. We had a lovely conversation about RVing and retiring and life in general. They are looking to replace their current coach with one more like ours so of course we toured them. In the AM we hooked the car up and prepared to leave and Joe came out to say farewell.
Another 360 miles East, on I 40 to Tucumcari where we turned NE on US 54 crossing a corner of the Texas Panhandle and the Oklahoma Panhandle to stop in Liberal Kansas at the MidAmerica Air Museum. It was hot and the wind continued to blow and as I write we are experiencing thunderstorms of varying ferociousness and continuous rain.
Tomorrow 423 miles to Elk Lodge in Blue Springs MO. It may take a lot longer if this rain doesn’t let up. I have moved the suitcases into the car for easier access for packing on Wednesday. Thursday we fly to JFK, Friday night 11:45 PM we fly to Istanbul and on to Ashgabat.