We looked to leave Geode State Park, in Southeast Iowa, on Sunday, December 15th. The night before, there was a moment when I was walking Rufus around the park, and there were a few inches of new fallen snow (actually a little snow falling that evening). The moon was waxing, illuminating the white landscape, and there was this moment when I turned to look at our RV and our new, little tow car. The windows glowed against the dark of night and in contrast to the moonlight, and the whole scene was incredibly peaceful.
My concept of home has evolved and expanded over the last few months. Home used to be Denver, and Denver still has a bit of that feeling, by virtue of our many friends who await us there, and the familiarity of knocking around Denver for some twenty years. But home now included my old boyhood haunts of Burlington, and the surrounding turf of Southeast Iowa. It now included Annapolis and Gaithersburg, in Maryland, as well as parts of New Jersey, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Ohio and Michigan. Before we are done, I am convinced that home will expand and evolve even more.
Come the Sunday, before setting out, we did a smudge ceremony on Ceci (our RV), and on Gypsy Rose, our new, little tow car. It was a cleansing ceremony, an acknowledgement of intention, and a chance to focus our thoughts towards a more positive effort overall. It is a form of prayer, and a nod to the mysterious workings of fate, the universe, and the open road. We took our time about it. Pony instructed me in the use of a sweeping gesture with the smudge stick, to sweep out any negativity that may be inhabiting our vehicles. And when it was done, I must say that I felt just a bit more comfortable driving Ceci, towing Gypsy Rose, heading down the highway on a December afternoon, back to Colorado.
We took back roads and lesser highways for the first day, and ended up dry camping in a Walmart parking lot in Osceola, Iowa that night. By Monday afternoon, we stopped at an RV park in Kearney, Nebraska (and one of the nicer RV parks we’d found so far), then actually made it into Denver by Tuesday afternoon. The roads and the weather favoured us for that leg of the journey, and we warmly greeted by our friend, Sir James, when he returned from work to find us camped next to his house and settled in for a few weeks of sharing the holidays with many of our good friends.
Happy holidays to one and all, and wishes for a most fortunate new year.