Spring is the air and road trip season is fast approaching. The two most obvious signs were the bees in the sage under the front window yesterday afternoon and the growing rumble of motorcycles on Route 66.
I am so fortunate ro reside here along old Route 66. Even if we can’t take to the highway as often as I would like, the endless stream of travelers allow me to live vicariously through their experiences.
As an example, Cort Stevens rolled though Kingman last fall on his grand Route 66 adventure and he has been sharing the journey with an ever growing photo exhibition on line. His excitement and passion for the adventure was, and is, quite infectous.
Equally as enjoyable are the foreign vistitors that pass through Kingman as they seek the wonders of Route 66 and the desert southwest. What an incredible opportunity it is to see the place I call home through the eyes of those who are seeing these stunning landscapes for the first time.
At times it seems as though the entire world is on parade along Route 66 and I have a front row seat. In recent years, I have met a fascinating young lady from Japan who came to Kingman after seeing pictures of the burros in Oatman, a gentleman from Holland celebrating the liberation of retirement with a bicycle ride on Route 66 from Chicago to Santa Monica, and a delightful fellow from Germany who was so enthralled with the desert southwest he obtained a work visa and went to work on a ranch as a cowboy!
It is memories such as these that have me eagerly counting the days to summer. What amazing opportunities for adventure await in the months ahead?
Meanwhile, as I sprint towards the finish line for Ghost Towns of Route 66 two books were ordered this morning in the hope of of filling in some holes. At some point I have to devise a hanging shelf system, dig a basement, or add a second floor to the office.
My library and research center grows, the book shelves groan under the load, and yet I find new reasons to add more books. http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=1968adventurer&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=0806120282&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifrCounted among my favorite titles are Dr. Dykes Diseases of the Gasoline Engine and How To Cure Them, 1903, a book by Emily Post chronicling her automotive tour across the United States in 1916, and a set of authorized Ford repair manuals, with annual updates, for the years 1921 to 1923.
Last evening I finished the section on the ghost towns along Route 66 in Texas with the story of Glenrio. In looking at the forlorn ruins there today its hard to imagine that this was once a prosperous little farming community with a depot, stores, and even a newspaper.
One aspect I found interesting was that Deaf Smith County was dry. So, those seeking something a bit stronger than soda pop made the dusty five mile drive west on Route 66 to Endee in New Mexico.http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=1968adventurer&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=0826316891&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr Another interesting tid bit was the fact that dependant on the age of the map, the town is shown to be in either New Mexico or Texas.
Listening to the wind whistle through the broken glass at the Longhorn Cafe or the remnants of the sign that proclaim a motel to be the first and last one in Texas forces a person to think and meditate. Perhaps that is a large part of the fascination with the empty towns and lost highways.
They prompt reflection on just how short life is, how elusive dreams can be, and how important it is to seize the day. In these forgotten places we see the hopes, dreams, and ambitions of those who preceeded us and are consumed with a hunger to laugh with a friend, be thankful for what we have and the time we have to enjoy those things, and to quietly savor the awe inspiring beauty of a sunset.
I suppose years spent in search of these lonely places and among the ruins have provided me with a deeper respect for time and how little is to alloted to us. It has helped me to understand that none of us are promised another day and that to kill time is truly a heinous crime.
With that said, lunch is over so its back to the grindstone. First and foremost I am grateful to have a job. Second, I am grateful that the evening is fast approaching as this means I have yet another opportunity to savor a sunset with my dearest friend.

If you enjoy Jim Hinckley\'s America, take a second to support jimhinckleysamerica on Patreon!