Road Trip

Tucson Travel Blog

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The Great American Road Trip comes in many forms. There is the time tested pile the wife-kids-luggage-into the car and see the country. There is the frat brothers-beer-road trip, where a group of college age boys (or girls) pile into someone’s car to head towards someplace warm for Spring Break. Ours was a combination of these two. But our story begins several months before when Dennis and I were planning this trip. We knew that there would be him and his girlfriend, Carrie, plus me and my family all going from San Diego to Tempe, AZ to see the game. That is five people. You can do that in a car, but it is a bit tight. But, Dennis’ brother, David, lived nearby, and as a big Broncos fan as well, wanted to go. Adding his girlfriend made seven. This was the days before the Ford Explorer, so there were no traditional vehicles available. So after very little thought, we decided to rent an RV. Now there would be plenty of room for everyone, we wouldn’t have to get motel rooms, we wouldn’t have to stop for bathroom breaks, and if we wanted to drink, everyone but the driver could. Open container laws not withstanding. So that is what we did.


Fastforward to the present. We wouldn’t be able to leave until Friday (Aug 14th) evening. We picked the RV up in the late afternoon to minimize the rental fees. Also, David and Jeri (his girlfriend) had to work, we had to load everything up, and get something to eat.  That was going to make for a late dispatch time and a night drive. Dennis hates to fly, so he has made many a night drive. That made him our driver and I would serve as navigator. But, as he had made this particular drive several times, to visit family in AZ, he wouldn’t be needing a navigator.  Except to figure out their way to the cooler to get him a soda. I figured I was up to the job.


We left around 9 PM and headed east. We were driving into the earth’s rotation, so we would be lose what little daylight we had, pretty quickly. . Not a big deal as once you cleared the mountains east of town and got into the plains of Eastern California/Western Arizona, there was not a lot to see. Our plan was to drive to Tucson and camp in Dennis’ Aunt Mary’s driveway. She would then go up to Phoenix/Tempe with us. The night driving worked out well in another way, too. The likes of Yuma, AZ, during daylight, in August, is pretty hard on a vehicle’s cooling system. Daytime highs are usually well over 100 that time of year, and 110 degrees would not be considered unusual. But, night driving is hard on the driver, and I did my best to keep Dennis both company and awake. I will admit to falling asleep several times, but not for long. We arrived in Tucson about 3 AM, with no incidences. Most everyone was already asleep. Dennis and I made it unanimous.

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photo by: walterman9999