365 Days on the Road

April 27, 2014 we headed out on our grand adventure to see the country. We sold the majority of our belongings: minus the books, photo albums, and home videos, those went to storage, and moved our family of six into our 35 ft Zinger.

 

Getting Rid of our Belongings

 

Since that time we have lived in four different states and added to our Band of Travelers a new member, Lucy Valentina, born February 14 in New Mexico.

Lucy Valentina

 

In Texas we saw our first rodeo and climbed Enchanted Rock.Llano, TX Rodeo

Enchanted Rock TX

From there we moved on to Cloudcroft, New Mexico where we lived at an elevation of over 9000 ft with a glorious daytime temperature of 70 degrees. I saw my first herd of elk and the wild horses of the Mescalero Apache Reservation.

Cloudcroft, New Mexico

And the children had the time of their lives sledding in summer at the White Sands National Monument.

White Sands National Monument

Not finished with the Land of Enchantment we moved north to the Four Corners area where we visited 700 + year old cliff dwellings and took a six hour train ride from Durango, CO to the old mining town of Silverton.

spruce tree dwelling

Durango Silverton Train

We stayed in New Mexico longer than intended as we waited for the birth of our precious sixth child Lucy.

As winter drug on we decided it was time to move to a warmer climate and ended up in Huachuca City, AZ. Here we learned about people like Doc Holiday and Wyatt Earp. We visited Tombstone.

Oliver and Doc Holiday

Oliver and Doc Holiday

Bisbee.

Bisbee, AZ

Old Tucson.

Medicine man show

The Chiricahua National Monument.

Chiricahua National Monument

And the Saguaro National Park.

Saguaro Cacti

These are but a few of the places we have been and the sights we have seen. As a family we have learned more about our country’s Western history than either Jim or I ever learned in school and we have walked streets where some of that history was made.

As we start our second year we look forward to continuing our education as we trek across the country.

 

Back in Bisbee

Bisbee

On a recent Sunday afternoon Jim and I decided to have a little alone time. Well, almost alone, Lucy and I are pretty much inseparable right now. So we headed back to Bisbee after a brief sojourn in Tombstone… again. Jim loves Tombstone; I almost think that he would stop all our travels today if I would agree to settle down there.

But, back to Bisbee. Old town Bisbee isn’t a large town, but without super-charged children who just want to keep moving, you have a chance to leisurely experience it.

Like this lovely little shop.

Free Store

Yes, the Brewery Gulch Free Store. Everything you need in one convenient stop. A poster of Lady Gaga, a 1990’s monitor, some ribbon, a bottle of mouthwash… there’s really too much to list here. All kidding aside could you explain to me the mindset of someone who leaves a nearly empty bottle of mouthwash? Seriously, I can not imagine my mouth ever tasting so bad that I would dare raise that bottle to my lips. But, at least it’s free.

Bisbee, AZ graffiti wall

 

I’m not usually a fan of graffiti. I generally can’t see it as anything but vandalism. But there is something about this wall that I like; it just fits some how.

 

Moondragon truck

Moondragon Truck

After asking the local glass blower we found out that the owner of this ‘truck’ is a Mr. Moondragon. Being someone who lives full-time in a caravan, I totally dig this truck. I wouldn’t want to live in it, but I dig it. : )

Inn at Castle Rock

This is the lounge at the Inn at Castle Rock. After a day of exploring Bisbee, I would love to curl up in one of these chairs and read for hours. And, from perusing a few entries in the Ghost Encounter journal, written by the hotel guests, I might even have company.

When we say goodbye to Arizona, I’ll miss Bisbee the most.

Bisbee, AZ

About seven years ago I was reading an article about the best small towns in America and Bisbee, AZ was listed there. I was immediately drawn to the description of this arts colony nestled in the mountains and boasting “The best year-round climate on earth”.  Of course the article neglected to mention the pot smoking hippies (are they still called hippies?) that call this old mining community home.

HippyBut I digress. Bisbee is a fascinating little town; with it’s narrow, winding main street, homes tucked into the surrounding hills, and these 1950’s sci-fi giant man-eating flies.

 

Bisbee Flies

The flies decorate several buildings in Bisbee and it’s not just because they’re so cute. In the mid to late 1800’s Bisbee suffered through repeated epidemics of typhoid fever and the house fly is a carrier of that disease. (This is why I tell Oliver he can not make a pet out of a fly; though he keeps trying.) So in 1912 the Commercial Club of Bisbee held a fly-swatting contest in hopes of lowering their population. The winner killed nearly 500,000 and won $10.

As far as I know they no longer have a typhoid problem,so there’s no need to fear, but I think it has more to do with them not throwing their sewage into the streets than with fly-swatting contests.

Bisbee wasn’t exactly what I expected, but it’s certainly an interesting place to visit.

Bisbee Angel Sculpture