Thursday, July 27, 2006

A Carthartic Drive on the Amazing 5

It's been the longest past two weeks of my life. Days were filled from early morning to midnite with the tedium of errands, moving, banking, post offices, car detailing, blah blah blah, an incredibly exhausting and draining whirlwind. Our estimated departure date came and went. We were at eachother's throats, spending each waking moment on tasks. So much energy and stress was focused into tying up these loose ends, I actually forgot the reason we were doing them.

It wasn't until yesterday at noon, as we were pulling our shiny clean Günther out of the driveway, that it really hit me. Nathan was in the driveway waving us goodbye. We were driving away from my home of the last 6 years, my brother, my friends, my life here. I felt light, happy, excited. Then I burst into tears.

It was just so strange to be leaving, to have this adventure we've been dreaming about to actually begin. To feel a marked moment where I knew my life was changing.

We had a tedious drive ahead of us, the 5 is not the most beautiful route to be taking in a bus with no AC in the heat of summer. Actually, I take that back. At moments we saw rolling hills shimmering golden in the heat, and the road was empty and stretched ahead of us. We made it to Sacramento, our day of sweat dried as we stepped into my uncle's cool air conditioned house to see my grandparents, cousins, snaggle-toothed dogs, and pet rats. We really made it, we're out of LA.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Long Live Gunther (Goon-thar)

At last, we've found The One. Early Monday morning we hopped on a plane with our hopes high and one-way flights to Phoenix, Arizona.

Even by 11am it felt like stepping straight into a nice toasty oven, at a comfy 105º. Our prospective seller and die-hard deadhead, David, picked us up from the airport. We didn't really know what to expect. After what happened with the last van (over $6k in repairs to make it road-worthy), we just wanted to find something that could get us through our trip, something that we could feel comfortable with. We pulled up to David's driveway and saw Him sitting there in the sushine.

Gun metal gray. Rasta red-yellow-green footpedals. Grateful Dead and Bob Marley stickers galore. A dusty vision of beauty.

After taking him for a few spins, we knew at the push of the gas pedal and with the corresponding roar that this was The One. He felt stable, strong, and unmistakenly cared for. David took good care of him, and took great care of us. Not to mention, he had a great dane the size of a horse, and a pet turtle the size of a small car. We drove away with a sense of confidence, a Dancing Bear beanie baby, and two power windows that would not roll down in 105º weather.

With six hours of miserably sweaty driving on our plate, we christened the van as Günther and sang songs about him. Günther is a warrior. Günther is a badass. Formerly known as Apache, Günther will take us around the continent and become our home. I can only imagine the crazy adventures he's already been on. We drove along, back to LA from Arizona and couldn't help but feel incredibly optimistic, even in the heat. We love Günther and can't wait to start our journey. Thanks David, if you ever look us up. We hope to leave early next week, maybe Monday or Tues...