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As promised by the weather people, light snow covered our area last night. No matter, it is that time of year when I go to Cheyenne and Fort Collins for annual doctors stuff, including an eye exam. I have three appointments scheduled for today.

I worried about the coming snow fall so I came down last night. Tango and I stay in a pet-friendly hotel here; he loves hobnobbing with other traveling dogs. We settled in for Monday Night Football; however, with no Aaron Rodgers after the opening drive, I turned it off. I listened to the Audible version of Travels With Charley, by John Steinbeck. This may be the 4th time I “read” it. I love the tales of his travels around our country in a truck camper,  in 1962. His only goal was to make observations about fellow Americans. He writes with amazement about the auto “travel courts” that sprang up and strip malls.

This morning, I try to imagine what the route he took would be like now, 50 years later. He started in Maine, drove across the northern states, down through California, across to Texas then into the deep south before heading home. Would he draw the same conclusions about people and America? I decide that someday in the not too distant future, I will retrace his steps. I can call it Travels with Tango. Of course, someone else may have done this already, but it is fun the think about.

Cheyenne has lots of things to do and see, but with the crummy weather, I will probably just head home this afternoon. I drove the little PT, which handles well in winter weather/

Quotes: John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley

“I wonder why progress looks so much like destruction.” 

 “I saw in their eyes something I was to see over and over in every part of the nation- a burning desire to go, to move, to get under way, anyplace, away from any Here. They spoke quietly of how they wanted to go someday, to move about, free and unanchored, not toward something but away from something. I saw this look and heard this yearning everywhere in every states I visited. Nearly every American hungers to move.”

“When I was very young and the urge to be someplace else was on me, I was assured by mature people that maturity would this itch. When years described me as mature, the remedy prescribed was middle age.In middle age I was assured greater age would calm my fever and now that I am fifty-eight perhaps senility will do the job. Nothing has worked. Four hoarse blasts of a ships’s whistle still raise the hair on my neck and set my feet to tapping. The sound of a jet, an engine warming up, even the clopping of shod hooves on pavement brings on the ancient shudder, the dry mouth and vacant eye, the hot palms and the churn of stomach high up under the rib cage. In other words, once a bum always a bum. I fear this disease incurable. I set this matter down not to instruct others but to inform myself….A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find after years of struggle that we not take a trip; a trip takes us.”

 “So much there is to see, but our morning eyes describe a different world than do our afternoon eyes, and surely our wearied evening eyes can report only a weary evening world.”

Travels with Charley: In Search of America

Travels with Charley: In Search of America (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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