July 10th 2009
Written the night of the 9th:
Somehow, in packing up all my stuff from the Starbucks in Cedar city, I left my power cords for most everything behind. Damn it. It means I’ll have to back-track and hope they still have it. Fuck. So much for making good time tomorrow.
I’m headed for Moab, but nothing is straight across in the backroads of Utah, so I’m winding Highway 14 over to Highway 89, then North to Highway 12, across Bryce Canyon and through Escalante. This is the proverbial “scenic route” and until tonight the main question was whether to take a southern route past Glen Canyon and then up Highway 191 into Moab, or just to jump up Highway 24 to I-70 and skip above Canyonlands before heading South into Moab. But now, for time’s sake, I think it is the northern route.
Well, hell. That’s what I get for dragging all this electronics with me. Or for being absent-minded. Whatever.
Late night-11:30 local time (10:30 back in CA). The campsite next door shows no sign of sleeping soon, so I’m just going to hop in the sack and see what happens. F**k, f**k, f**k.
Sigh. It would be so nice not to be human. Maybe not. But still.
I couldn’t sleep the whole night. Somehow, about 4:30 or so I knocked out, but I was up before 7, packed and on the road back to Cedar City. No stuff.
So, I was in a funk all day. Today’s drive had the most gorgeous scenery–I took pics when I could, but I some of the best stuff I didn’t get. If you do one road in your lifetime, Highway 12 through Utah should be the one!
Anyway, all I could think of was what a loser I can be–all those negatives, over and over in my head. It is terrible to be alone and have nothing good to say to yourself.
Then, about 15 miles out of Torrey, Utah on the way to Hanksville there was a woman by the side of the road with a motocross helmet and jacket trying to flag people down. No one stopped, so I turned around when I could and went back. I asked if everything was okay and she said no, she’d dropped her multi-sport bike in sand in wash about a mile off the road and couldn’t lift the bike herself. Her name was Susie and she was from Tennessee, about my age, and had a knee replacement last year and didn’t trust the weight on it. I didn’t ask why she was doing something so dangerous alone and with no phone–what the hell am I doing after all? I followed her in, helped her lift the bike, which kicked over and seemed none the worse for wear and I refused the $20 she wanted to give me for helping. After I was sure she was fine, I rode off. Maybe there’s still some good in me.
So now I’m in Moab, which is too depressing. It’s gone tourist from when Ed Abbey wrote and I think I’ll leave as soon as I can tomorrow. I caught a cheap $9 room at the local hostel and I’ve showered, shaved and done my laundry. I’m almost presentable. Almost–I still have a cloud over me and I can’t hardly stand the people I’m around, but it’s me, not them who’s out of it.
I’ll visit Arches, tomorrow, then I don’t know.