If this past weekend were to have a theme it would be Route 66 detour. I started with the office on Saturday morning which was a non stop flow of folks moving out, folks moving in, and folks enjoying Route 66.
The latter always makes my day as it enables me to experience the excitement of Route 66 for the first time, vicariously, through their travels. It also gives me a chance to introduce them to a wide array of wonders found with short detours from Route 66.That was the theme behind my first Route 66 book, Route 66 Backroads. I have long been of the opinion Route 66 adventurers often miss some of the best the highway has to offer by being myopic in their travels.
Then I found an old photo postcard, circa 1950, of a billboard on the Arizona/New Mexico state line that promoted the wonders of Route 66 as well as attractions such as the Grand Canyon and Sedona that are only experienced with short detours. The rest, as they say, is history.
On numerous occasions, when I present Route 66 as an adventure as well as a portal, the Hualapai Mountains are used as an example. This forested oasis is a mere dozen miles south of Kingman and the deserts of western Arizona.
In addition to the beautiful drive with its stunning views, and excellent opportunities to test the brakes, there is a wonderful lodge, miles of hiking trails, camp sites, cabin rentals, and a county park with picnic sites.
Saturday morning at the office marked the culmination of a long and tiring week. Adding to the stress is the ticking of the clock that serves as a constant reminder the dead line for Ghost Towns of Route 66 is fast approaching and the research is moving at a glacial pace.
My plans were to spend the afternoon on working to speed this up. First, however, was the need to complete three book reviews for Cars & Parts magazine. Then I ended up with another Route 66 detour.
This time it was Facebook. I have been seeking Route 66 information through this social interactive site and corresponding with experts on this topic such as Jim Ross.
However, I have a weakness and passion for informed, intellectual debate on current events that leads to growth and positive societal evolution. Intelligent discourse without name calling and character assassination is fast becoming an endangered past time so when the opportunity to engage presented itself I jumped in with both feet.
Long story short, discussions on Route 66 related topics soon became a lengthy and invigorating discourse on taxation, gay marriage, and all manner of current events. I enjoyed myself immensely and even relaxed, at least until I noticed the time and realized it was going to be a long evening.
Sunday morning became another opportunity for a Route 66 detour This time it was to spend a morning with my dearest friend and savor an Arizona sunrise among the towering pines and fall colors of the Hualapai Mountains. Enhancing the delightful morning were the brisk temperatures that hovered around forty degrees.
I suppose if there is a moral to this story it would be don’t be afraid of detours. It might even be a good idea to seek them on occasion as long as you don’t loose site of the goal.