Tuesday, October 25, 2005
One of the first points of interest you come to traveling west on I-40 into Arizona is the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest. Back in the fifties my dad would roar past these places in our old '53 Buick, not heeding the pleas of my sisters and I to stop so we could see. My parents would point out the Painted Desert to us in the distance, but would never stop our marathon rush to Oklahoma, occasioned by the urgent need to attend the funeral of a relative. These drives from California to the red dirt state started on a Friday night as soon as my Dad got home from work and then it was headlong across the desert, no air conditioning, windows down, my oldest sister up front between Mom and Dad and me and three other sisters in the back. Our only stops were for gas and a loaf of bread and a pound of bologna, which we ate on the fly. After I got my driver's license I would help drive in the middle of the night when my Dad couldn't stay awake any longer. Now, Dorothy and I strive to be checked into a motel before sundown, and enjoy a meal at a nice restaurant, although we do eat bologna sandwiches occasionally for old time's sake.