Thursday, September 15, 2011

This trip is done

The Berkshires in Massachusetts
Hazy and humid at the Cape Cod Canal

Smile at the canal

My trip has finished. I crossed the Cape Cod Canal yesterday at sunset. It was great to breathe the salt air. Yoko stood up and looked out the window when she smelled it, paws on the arm rest. She knew we were here, and we got out at the canal-side rest area. Soon after that, I was on my way to see my husband for dinner in Hyannis. Tomorrow, I’ll see the Cape Cod grandkids and so many more people who I have missed during my time away. I am sad that our house in Montana is now on the market, and I wish I would stop dreaming about it at night. New doors will open, a new home will be found. But my luxurious straight-line thinking of driving will now come to an end, and the crazy-quilt pattern of cobbling together a day begins. Stuff to unpack, appointments to be made,  people to see, and a home to be found and furnished.
I drove from the Finger Lakes area in New York to Cape Cod in one day. . . not unheard of, but it was my second 500 mile day. You have traveled over 2800 miles with me. What do I have to say about the state of our union after having driven over the northern tier of it?  Our small cities have lost a lot of people. Several of the places I stayed along the way seemed deserted, like Sheridan on the Missouri River.  Many of our farms have been bought out by huge profit seeking agro companies, companies that are traded on the stock exchange.  There are not as many people traveling from one state to another as there used to be. Trucks carry our produce, and diesel fuel is up around $4.15 a gallon.  Look for everything to be more expensive. A lot of our country is in a state of emergency. . . floods from tropical storms, and before that (June) many areas flooded due to a large snow load. . . and of course they have not yet recovered. Fires. . . big ones. . . AZ, CA, and now Texas. I can’t imagine anyone, Tea Party or not, saying to the federal government, no, don’t give us any relief money. We are going to take care of it ourselves. ie:  I am so very sick of tea party hypocrites. They couldn’t live in the world they are asking for.
Speaking of floods:  was thinking of stopping to see a relative of mine in Colrain, Massachusetts as I came through the Berkshires. But her house was one of those inundated, and she lost everything. Best not to stop by today.  The rain came down, and the floods came up.  She is back in her house after spending a week in the shelter, but it stinks, and she is cleaning up the grime, mud and trash. FEMA has inspected, and she definitely qualifies for help, but no help yet. HazMat came and did an clean-up of her basement, her oil tank popped and leaked all over the basement. She’s lost everything. . . clothing, food in the freezer, appliances, furniture. Has to start again. Her grown kids have to work and cannot help her. They are not nearby. This is the new American retirement, it seems. Emergencies everywhere that drain every ounce of energy and reserve. I’m sending her a care package, she deserves it.
I loved the gentle hills of upper state New York, and the more pronounced peaks of the Berkshires as I zoomed along. I do miss my Montana giant mountains, but it was nice to enter Massachusetts and then drive under the Appalachian trail on the turnpike. And before I knew it, I was at the Canal. And then drinking a margarita with my hubby. So all is well. I have completed my travels, but not my journey. Still much to discover and strive to achieve. Thank you for traveling with me, my friends.

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