This is just a quick summary of our 5 day journey from Baja home to Canada. We left the our little beach house in San Felipe (after spending 2 days in paradise) early on Jan. 2.
I had my last breakfast on the patio and the kids loaded all their sea treasures into plastic bags.
We drove north toward the U.S border along the east coast of the Baja Penninsula.
We eventually found our way through Mexicali and into the U.S. Free bit of advice: It's usually a good idea to get in the right line...
From Calexico we drove straight up through the east side of California, the Mohave desert. We had driven across it before but never up through it length wise.
There was a whole lot of nothing...nothing but fascinating desert scenery anyhow.
It was like it's own little world out there. I felt like we were in the Pixar Cars movie and were headed down route 66 to places time had forgotten.
We pointed out cotton fields to our kids. Now they know where their clothes come from.
Our car started making bad noises toward the end of the first day. We had noticed some glichy things happening but figured we'd get them checked once we got home. It became apparent that we would need to stop before Las Vegas and find a garage. We tried to make it to Boulder City but after driving in the middle of the wilderness, in the dark, with our car sounding like it was about to fall apart under us, we stopped in Needles California. Luckily, we found a decent motel in the little town and the next day we limped our way a few miles to Bullhead City Arizona.
This garage was great. Very helpful, good service and quite sympathetic to our plight of being homeless vagabonds without a car or cell phone. We killed about 6 hours, with four children, in a few stores nearby but then found out that the part didn't arrive and it wouldn't be ready until the next morning.
As it turns out two of our wheels were close to coming right off! Out came the credit card.
We used their phone to call a taxi and find a hotel. Loaded our crew and luggage into a taxi and gave him the address of a hotel that had a "suite" (we are too many people for one room)
A couple hours of waiting, fighting, and entertaining kids in a hotel lobby later we had a room...actually two rooms.
Where we stayed the rest of the day, and the night, and half of the next day.
What does a person do with 4 kids in a really cruddy hotel room, in the middle of nowhere, with no car and not so much as a fast food restaurant within walking distance?
(This kind of stress could lead to heavy drinking.)
Pizza delivery for supper, untoasted Poptarts from the gas station across the street for breakfast. Good stuff.
We are not picky people when it comes to hotels or vacations spots....but this place had me irritated and it was stupid expensive. Like no hotel we'd ever been to. For more on our experience check out my trip advisory rating. I've never left a rating before and certainly have never been ticked off enough to leave a bad one. I wish we would have had the choice and ability to check the rating before we checked in. Apparently we aren't the only ones that hated this place. We maybe should have guessed something was amiss when we were the only ones staying there. 200 rooms and 2 cars in the parking lot.
we were on the road again. We made it to Las Vegas and were relieved to be back on the highway....that is until I rolled down a window and it wouldn't go back up. Wouldn't budge at all. We tried again and again.
That's when my sweet husband just about lost his mind. Fortunately he didn't direct his frustration at me...the car door, however, should consider itself lucky it didn't get ripped off and left in the desert. He couldn't get to it, so it seemed we'd be looking for another garage and handing them our credit card again.
I said a silent desperate prayer.
The window went up. Like nothing had even happened.
Sigh of relief and a thankyou.
No one touched the windows the rest of the trip.
Back on the open road, with
kids entertaining themselves happily in the back.
Two more nights of hotels, 1 episode of vomit (the day I forgot to give kids Dramamine for breakfast) , and a bunch of movies later, we were home.
Home sweet home...
or in our case "home, freeze my butt off ,home".
The windchill today was -46 degrees Celcius out here in the sticks.
I miss my flip flops already.
It did feel heavenly to sleep in my own bed after 6 weeks of motels, and "junk for Jesus" donated missionary beds.
Now to process this amazing journey...