Alta Blue Birthday

birthday Cake final

This week’s episode comes in two parts, one from Bryan and one from Catherine.

Happy Anniversary Alta Blue Skies, and I Mean That

By Bryan Ward

As I write this, I am in a horrible mood. I rarely get this cranky, but Catherine has confirmed my state of mood most fervently. She is right, of course, but she better watch it or I will be forced to keep my unrelenting bitching and complaining to myself.

Why is my mood so awful? Maybe it’s the weather, which has produced three days of rain interspersed with periods of foreboding clouds. May be it’s the stale convenience store coffee. Or, the screaming kids across the campground that just won’t shut the @#$#&^ up! Or it could be the male authority figure feigning to be the children’s caretaker as he plays a really bad guitar while the kids fight at the top of their lungs. Maybe it is because I feel really old today because of the fact that I want those damn kids to “stay out of my yard.” A cow has been bellowing in the distance for hours, he/she obviously shares my distaste for the screaming kids and the wounded guitar. It is never good when your first thought in the morning is “what is wrong with those people?”

While the campground Bumpasses are contributing to my current mindset, it is not they who are the root of my dismay. I am acutely aware that my discontent comes because travel season abruptly ends tomorrow when we all go back to work at regular jobs like regular Americans. The only thing to placate my restless spirit would be another year on the road.

The past year has been truly remarkable. We have traveled bunches of miles and visited bunches of places. We have seen the sublime, obscure, awe-inspiring, and downright disgusting. We have pushed the limits of what I thought we could do, or probably even should do. Homeless and adrift is not necessarily good for most relationships, but it works for us. We travel well together, which is nice, so we’ve got that going for us. The more time we spend together, the more I like her. I will miss spending every waking moment with her the most — except for bathroom breaks — we aren’t gross like that.

I guess I will head off to work tomorrow. However, I will not promise to be a rosy piece of sunshine. I will promise to search for the next great place to travel and to keep looking for adventure.

I now am going out to throw rocks at the Bumpasses. Let the adventure continue. As Samuel Beckett sort of said, “…you must go on, I can’t go on, I’ll go on”.

An Anniversary Toast(s)

by Catherine Breese

I don’t know how it happened but somehow a whole year has passed. That’s the way life seems right now to me–as though I’m on a train watching out the window. It is accelerating as it races across the wide-open American plains. The world appears a blur.

When I was younger, this part of my life seemed forever away, and now I’m old-ish and the moment is real. But there is still a ways to go, I suppose, before the train pulls into the station. We have no choice but to do our best to make the world slow down just a little bit during the really good parts, to stop the blur long enough to savor the moment. This year has brought so many good parts, I happen to be feeling rather lucky right now.

Alta Blue Skies is one year old. We plan to have cake and champagne but for now I am raising a cup of gas station coffee outside of a KOA campground and making some toasts.

Here is to one damn good year.

Here’s to Bryan E. Ward, Jr., my fellow traveler, my co-worker, my staff photographer, and the lifter of all things heavy.

Here is to Canada. You have played a big part in our year and we are grateful for all things Canadian, except the beer. (It is boring and expensive, but nobody’s perfect and we wouldn’t want you to become conceited.)

Here is to the Wojdas, the Libertys, the Elmores, the LePontois, and Breeses who put us up and put up with us when we had no home and when we just wanted to stay.

Here is to the KOA Natural Bridge with your white chickens, your red wheelbarrow, and your rain. You’ve got all the ingredients for a cool poem.

Here is to you, our kind readers. Thanks for coming to our page. We appreciate it. Keep up the good work. And, please order something from Amazon using our link. No really.