While the cold dark rain of this past October socked into Manitoba, our annoying friends were sending us pictures of their hiking and cycling adventures in sunny Arizona. Pictures of painted toe nails foreshadowed by a campground swimming pool contrasted with my aching joints. At a Halloween party, Mary Poppins herself said “we’re going next week. Join us.” “Why not?” said I. “Why not?” said Ray. We’re off tomorrow.

There aren’t many times in one’s life when you are completely unencumbered by responsibility. There’s almost always something, children, grandchildren, parents, illness, empty bank accounts. But this is that time. We’ve got nothing, well Tucker but he’s our reluctant partner in adventure. It was a tragedy when we lost all our Moms in our early 20’s, but now we have no aging parents to worry about. We’ve got two wonderful sons, who haven’t seen fit to settle down and produce grandchildren. We could lament that, but honestly those two ask nothing of us. We haven’t run out of retirement money yet (but we’re working on it). Most of all, besides aching joints in this cold damp Manitoba fall we’re healthy (touch wood, cross fingers, praise the lord). Seize the moment, because this won’t last.

There was one other time that Ray and I had this freedom. His Mom had just passed and one year before mine as well, leaving us a paltry inheritance – just enough for two young irresponsible kids to buy a couple of brand new motorcycles. Ray had just been laid off from his job, and suddenly I found myself locked out of mine because of a strike. Parents dead, children not even on the radar yet – we mounted those brand new bikes and went off to discover America. I kind of feel like we’ve come full circle.

The truck is mostly packed, Tucker heading off for a salon appointment this morning. We’re off… to rediscover America. Then Asia. Be back in time to plant the garden.



My Mother's Journal of the West Coast Trail circa late 1970's
Road Trip USA

One Response to Footloose

  1. We were just speaking about going back to Arizona some day. We love the national parks, the colours of the desert, sandstone, First Nation culture. It draws us back every few years. Be safe and have fun Donna and Ray.

    Nancy November 8, 2019 at 10:23 am Reply

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