28 December 2015

Road Trip - Day One

As we made final preparations for Phase Three of Vacation Shenanigans 2015 last night, my brother-in-law made a crack about us recreating the journey of those unfortunate souls in "The Grapes of Wrath." That got me to thinking. Yes, we are making a cross country trek in a vehicle that has more seam-busting and junk bulging from it than a middle-aged German tourist in a Speedo on Mallorca. We are heading east to Florida rather than west to California in search of prosperity (well, CAL's internship). With those changes in mind and with all apologies to John Steinbeck, we are now on The Oranges of Wrath Tour 2015.

After 10 and 1/2 hours of driving that started this morning in Chandler, AZ, we are now taking refuge in a non-descript hotel under renovation in the middle (not even) of the snowy (yeah, thanks for that Ma Nature) country of Texas (it just never ends). Some highlights from the day's adventure:

We stopped off on the far side of Tucson to see the stunningly patient and mighty fine SML's brother and his family. Knowing that we suffer from a dearth of good Mexican food in Connecticutistan, they chose a fine little Mexican joint. I ordered a chorizo burrito, which in retrospect and in the prophetic words of the great sage Ron Burgundy was "a bad choice." Why? Well, I love me some chorizo but it's effect on me is highly fluid, like the Kardashian family morals. Suffice to say, I have paid a price to insure that my wife and daughter did not suffer. I'll leave it at that...

New Mexico
The Land of Enchantment. No, no it is not. Sure, there's Taos and its beauty. There's Santa Fe and its art and vortexes. Then there is the glory that is the Hatch Chile. However, the highlights of NM along the I10 include Lordsburg, Deming and Las Cruces. I'm really glad CAL drove the NM leg so I could sleep. Sorry, NM, but enchantment is not the first word that comes to mind.

We blew into El Paso and its twin across the border, Ciudad Juarez, the day after they got pounded by a freaky snow storm. Very strange to see both cities awash in snow. We also got to see the physical manifestation of the idea of nirvana of everyone's favorite fascist, xenophobic, loud-mouthed bully of an uncle, Donald Trump, in the form of the wall between El Paso and Juarez. As we drove out of El Paso into the eerily dark Texas night, the presence of Border Patrol was thick. It's a very cold night here so hopefully it'll be a warm night for those taken in this evening.

So Day One is in the books. San Antonio, Houston and who knows how far into Louisiana we'll get tomorrow. This much I know though - there's a Waffle House with my name on it. It's not a road trip until you've choked down a waffle from the WH.

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