Realizing what the weather’s been like back home, I hesitate to mention this..but even the desert valley locals say this has been one of the nicest Januarys in recent memory. Monday, though, we face the chilling reality that our time here has expired and we must press on home to Dakota. I’m already dreading those long hours gazing though the windshield at that monotonous slab of concrete occasionally interrupted by moments of heart-in-the-mouth terror as idiot drivers suddenly pull out in front of me while I’m passing..because it’s too much trouble for them to tap-off their #$%&! cruise control. Should be fewer travel trailers and motor homes on the road going back, though. But there are still plenty of truckers who feel the need to block the interstate when one tries to pass another without sufficient power to get the job done and, of course, the passee..not about to sacrifice any momentum, refuses to lift off the gas to let him (or her) by resulting in a big backup of cars behind with drivers clearly mouthing naughty words. I’m also anticipating aggravation and anger every time we stop to top off Big Red. Gas prices have gone up 20 @#$%^& cents a gallon since we left. A growing market for cars and fuel in places like China, Brazil and India are blamed..but that’s the same excuse given the last time when, during the financial crisis, oil jumped to 145 dollars a barrel. Then, when Americans said to hell with that and quit driving everywhere, the price dropped to 30 dollars a barrel. Market analysts say that’s not likely to happen again, though; just the opposite: five bucks a gallon by 2012. If that’s the case, Big Red is in for a lot of down time in our garage.
But enough of that negativity. It has been another great escape and most enjoyable few weeks. Linda has read a dozen books and visited the nearby casino a few times and I’ve gotten to play lots of January golf and meet up with many old friends.
We’re having a big get-together this weekend with Linda’s family. Six of her seven brothers and sisters along with the 87 year old matriarch of the Trudeau clan, Mother Mary, have traveled here. There are several relatives in the Phoenix area who’ll be hosting lots of patio parties featuring abundant wine, mildly spicy Southwest munchies and lots of laughter. A fine way to bid this home away from home “Adios” for another season.