Fame and fortune have proved somewhat elusive but I have only been writing for twenty years. I suppose this would be a good time to meditate on the old adage about patience being a virtue. Still, there are no complaints. As noted so many times, I love to write. Through the books written and the magazine articles published I have met a number of fascinating people, made many friends, and found an endless number of excuses for grand adventures on Route 66 and the road less traveled. With 2010 fast winding down, I am turning my eyes to 2011 the possibility for adventure that awaits. Topping the list in the “future adventures” category is the international Route 66 festival scheduled for next June in Amarillo. With the unveiling of each new detail the pulse quickens. With each new post about the event on the Yahoo Route 66 egroup my eyes drift toward the calendar and in my mind, I begin counting the days. I am eager to meet electronic pen pals, say thank you to all who provided assistance in transforming my ideas into books, and talk with others who have fallen in love with the myth and the legend that is Route 66. As an added bonus the event will coincide with the release of my next book, Ghost Towns of Route 66. One of the few things I enjoy as much as traveling is planning a trip. With Amarillo as the centerpiece, next June’s adventure may be more than a mere trip, it could be an epic adventure on par with those chronicled in the Odyssey. Finances are most always a constraint but the biggest may be in regards to time. Unless the books written begin paying dividends large enough to quit my day job in the next six months, we will have somewhere between seven and ten days fort he entire trip. That wouldn’t be to bad if we drove to Amarillo and then home again. However, I have never been able to keep things that simple when planning an adventure. So, initially I have coupled the photography end of the Route 66 encyclopedia with the trip to Amarillo. That means a trip to Chicago. That means with this limited time frame, driving is out of the question. That means taking the train from Kingman or flying from Las Vegas. That means if we fly, the destination may as well be Detroit as that would allow a brief visit with my dad in Jackson, and an opportunity to drive another of my favorite highways, U.S. 12. So, in a nut shell what I have in mind with plan “A” is fly to Detroit, rent a car, and drive to Amarillo. However, that creates another issue. If we fly that means driving to Las Vegas and leaving the truck. That means we can’t simply drive home from Amarillo. That means driving past home to Las Vegas to get the truck and that means another two hundred miles. All of this means additional expense.In an ideal world where fish don’t smell funny and roses don’t have thorns, we would take the loyal Jeep, and drive to Jackson. Then we could begin our Route 66 adventure in Chicago after a cruise on U.S. 12 to set the mood. With two weeks it would be feasible, difficult and rushed but still feasible. In either case it looks as though we will be driving Route 66 from Chicago, after a tour of the windy city courtesy of Dave Clark, the legendary Windy City Warrior. That would be the good news.So, allowing for two days in Amarillo, a day with my dad, a day for touring Chicago, and a day of driving from Kingman to Las Vegas and flying to Detroit it would mean five days for the road trip from Chicago to Las Vegas and home again, tha tis dependant on if I can squeeze out ten days away from the office.
|The world famous Midpoint cafe in Adrian Texas|
That leaves little time to linger over pie at the Midpoint cafe in Adrian, side trips to places like Endee, or sleeping in at the Wagon Wheel Motel. In fact it would leave little time for sleeping as in conjunction with the publisher, there would be book signings and a guest spot on a radio show or two along the way. All of this long winded, thinking out loud posting has a point. As I began meditating on the logistics a plan “B” has been formulating in my little brain box, a plan that is quickly over taking plan “A” – two trips. Trip one; drive to Amarillo with stops at our favorite places in New Mexico, west Texas, and Arizona. So, now we would have more time to enjoy Amarillo and more time for the road. Then, say in mid September or the first weeks of October, we could make the photographic safari from Chicago, with a stop at dad’s trip two. This would give us extra time for the drive as well another opportunity to visit with folks met in Amarillo and the folks who couldn’t attend. I love planning trips. I love taking trips and the thought of two grand adventures on Route 66 has me eagerly anticipating 2011.