Travel Tales

Change of Scenery

I woke up Monday morning to snow. Not the uncertain kind, the kind that can’t decide if it’s really snowing or not, that melts as soon as it hits the ground. This was the insistent sort, the flakes big and fluffy and determined. By day’s end, we had about four inches on the ground and I had run none of the errands I’d planned to so I could start my Utah departure. I’ve had my fill of snowed-in days this winter – I was not feeling this one.

By Tuesday I couldn’t sit around any longer. I loaded my car with packages to ship home for storage (thanks, Corinne!) and dropped a trunkful of donations off to the local thrift store. Back home, there was nothing left for me to do but start packing my car, praying it would all fit. One piece at a time, it did! Seemed to make sense that I’d hit the road then and there…why wait?

The roads got snowy (and slightly scary) on my way in, but by midnight Tuesday I was in Eagle, CO. At 3:30a Joselyn and I were still up, chatting over much-needed wine. In just those first three hours I felt more like myself than I had in weeks. We spent the days at Joselyn’s store (Rouge, a must if you’re ever in the Vail area), where I helped sort merchandise (read: went shopping) and re-dress mannequins between customers. We went to Vail for the end-of-season concert that, aside from the snow (12″ over night!) and Jos taking a tumble at the end of the night, was a fun end to a much needed change of scenery.

I left Eagle this morning with the goal of hitting Lincoln, NE by end of day. It’s 11p and I can say I made it safely here after a brief but lovely stop in Denver to see family. My cousin and his wife had a baby who’s now a toddler who I’d never had the chance to meet. You only drive through Denver so often, and they were gracious enough to have me over for lunch.

Tomorrow, I’ll head out for Iowa where I’ll zip north from I-80 into Dubuque to see more family, including another cousin’s new baby (though this one’s not yet two months old!). By Tuesday, I should be back in the Chicago-land area and finally unpacking the car full of all my wordly possessions (and my cat).

Much as I knew I needed to get out of Utah and head back to parts more familiar, I was wary of making the long drive on my own. Having my mom along on my way out to Park City was very welcome company on an often uneventful drive (ahem…Nebraska…). But this leisurely drive back east, what with stops to see friends and family along the way, has me feeling anything but lonely. No, I’m blessed to have so many loved ones across the country, and even more so to have the time to stop and say hello as I go.