How’s the wifi in your wigwam?

Wednesday. GALLUP, NM – PAINTED DESERT – PETRIFIED FOREST NATIONAL PARK – HOLBROOK, AZ

Here is a sentence you’d never expect to say during your time on earth.  “How is the wifi in your wigwam?”  And yet here we are.  Wigwam #15 at the iconic Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona.  The wifi is kind of dodgy, and we can’t believe we’re here.  The night is winding down earlier than usual.  We had a fabulous lunch of chicken fried steak for most of us and couldn’t even imagine another meal after all of that…so snacks, wine, and some trail magic from my friend Deb Landesberg back in B’ton…that’s all we need.  Thanks Deb!  Sampling from the packages of nuts and pretzels and dried fruit and fudge (left over from Uranus!) and chocolate covered apples, we still can’t believe we’re actually here.  Five days ago we were in Florida and had never even met Sparky.

Janey, Trudi, Patti, Jean and I started the day later than usual but with the common idea that we would walk to a coffee shop in town and bring back coffee for Patty.  It was a lovely mile walk into the town of Gallup, New Mexico, a town richly deserving of the revitalization that is occurring.  IMG_4854The coffee shop is in a beautiful old 1920 theatre building and as we walked we were open to the remarkable occurrences that have happened so often on this trip.  We passed a street named “Strong Rd.” and sent a picture of the sign to Patty back at the hotel.  We passed a homeless man picking through a dumpster who was wearing a shirt that read, “Don’t ever give up.”  That’s the second time we’ve gotten that advice on the trip.

The coffee shop owner is proud of her town and her beautiful building, and we loved sharing our story with her until we finally left to search out a health food store we’d passed on the way…She is wearing a Patty bracelet in this picture.

Several days ago, as we left St. Louis and headed west, Patty put one of her favorite movies into the dvd player in Sparky, and the second and third rows got to watch the movie, Michael.  Johns Travolta plays the title character, Michael, who is an angel.  The movie is “all about love” as Patty says…

Back to the health food store.  We were looking for fruit and other more healthful choices for our Happy Snacker Camp Time which occurs in the suburban each day as we drive.  The owner of the store was busy unloading supplies from a truck when we arrived, but he soon showed interest in us and we, of course, began to share Patty’s story…His name was Michael.  He offered some alternative medicine thoughts and advice and wished Patty well.  We promised to convey his wishes….and then he startled us by saying, “We’re all going to die, I don’t know what else to say except it’s all about love.”  He was the second Michael to tell us this in as many days.

We returned to the hotel for a few pictures before departing for Arizona and the Petrified Forest.

You may be wondering if we have forgotten about our soon-to-be-closer friends, Ellen and Melissa?  Well we haven’t…

 

In fact, we IMG_4201continue to prepare postcards for Ellen as she likes to hear from people who are on vacation.  Trudi oversees this each day, and ensures that they are mailed…and we each sign each postcard…it’s the least we can do, right?

On the subject of Trudi, it’s pretty clear that she’s the nicest of the lot of us.  She’s my roommate.  Best ever.  Phrases like “How Trudi are you?” and “You’re no Trudi.” are part of the Suburban vernacular.  When you have a roommate that brings you your first morning cup of hot coffee in a styrofoam cup with a lid and the words, “Good M.” written on it, you know you’re lucky.  The pen ran out.  It would have said, “Good Morning.”  Pretty nice, right?

We started our short day of driving and soon were entering the state of Arizona.  We all like to cheer and yell when we cross state lines, and this time was no different.  But we never need an excuse to sing…

We sing often.  And rather poorly.  Old campfire songs.  Songs that are traveling songs.  Songs that were popular in the early 80’s when we were born.  Ahem.  It’s lovely to think of all the money that’s been saved that might have been wasted on voice lessons for us!

The terrain as we neared the Petrified Forest was unimaginably beautiful.  We Florida girls are used to lush green irrigated St. Augustine Grass.  What we found today was like the surface of an unfriendly planet.

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We drove away checking out at the gate and doing what we do.  Sharing news of the blog and Patty’s story and of our desire to meet Ellen and Melissa, this time with a park ranger.

We initiated a new “safety measure” for those times when we climb back into Sparky and need to make sure that we haven’t lost anyone.  Patty yells, “ONE” and each of us, in turn, yells our number in order till we get to SIX.  That’s how we know we have all hands on deck.  By unanimous vote your Blog Master (B.M.) was given, you guessed it, #2.  It’s funny every time.

It’s even fun doing laundry in Holbrook, Arizona.

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Back to our Wigwam.  Home for the night.

 

We feel like we need to let you readers know how much we appreciate all of the encouraging texts and emails and especially blog comments that you’ve shared.  The donations to the Callaghan Tire Pro-Am Golf Tournament for Cancer Research have meant a lot to us too.  Each day we read your blog comments out loud to each other…your support and encouragement mean so much.  Patty is overwhelmed.  We all are.  Just thank you is all we can say.  And stay with us, please.  We’re not alone on this trip.  We know that.

There is a lovely quote that Jane and Patty both like from the movie, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, “Everything will be all right in the end…and if it’s not all right, then it’s not the end.”

Tonight Trudi has some thoughts to share..

July 14, 2016 Trudi’s words:

What an amazing experience this trip is!  When Patty first asked me to join her on this bucket list trip down Route 66, I thought I was doing her a favor.  The truth is, Patty has done the favor for me. I have gained such an appreciation for the beauty of this amazing country.  As we drive from east to west, we see the diverse beauty in the changing landscape – from the green farmland in Illinois to the rolling hills in Missouri, through the flatlands in Oklahoma and Texas, on to the arid mesas in New Mexico and now we approach the canyons in Arizona.  Truly spectacular!  However, even more stunning than the lovely landscape is the beauty of the people we have met along the way.  The outpouring of love we’ve felt has been so heartwarming.  I think we have all gained a renewed sense of the goodness of people. America, indeed the beautiful.

I can’t thank Patty enough for bringing me along and reminding me to live a more meaningful life.

Trudi

 

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Blog notes:

http://www.bradenton.com/news/local/article89426157.html  Richard Dymond’s wonderful follow up article in the Bradenton Herald, 7/14/16  We’re so thankful for the local support we’ve enjoyed.

For more info on the Callaghan Tire Charity Pro-Am Golf Tournament held every fall in the Bradenton Area, please check:  www.callaghantirecharityproam.com.  Also, Donations toward Cancer Research may be made payable to “Callaghan Tire Charity Pro-Am” with “Sixty Sixtahs” on the memo line and mailed to 5066 18th Ave W., Bradenton, Florida 34209.  All monies (100%) collected go directly toward cancer research.

 

26 Comments Add yours

  1. kimdok says:

    Hey Patty V! Missing u…soooooo happy that u are having a blast with the girls. I look forward to reading ur blog every morning…feels like we are there with you…enjoy! ❤️ Kim

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks for joining us KIM!!!

      Like

  2. Tami says:

    “Don’t forge twin on a blog” was how I first read the name of your blog. Hahahahahaha! Silly me. So thanks for clearing that up at the outset.
    Thank you ladies, for sharing the goodness and uniqueness that comes with being a woman and sharing life with female friends. Truly, girls should run the world.
    From another wonderful film: you are proving that “Love Actually, is all around.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. This makes us roll on the floor.laughing..what a terrible name for a blog..and yet we’re having so much fun hearing about all the possible ways it could be confused! Best movie ever, Love Actually. Couldn’t agree more…BM

      Like

  3. dmercier2016 says:

    Another great blog this morning!!!!! Don’t miss the Bradenton Harold article…… neither will disappoint!!! Thanks again for taking us along!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks so much! so glad to have you along…

      Like

  4. Momma Betty says:

    It just gets better and better, you are creating a very special bond with secrets only you will know!
    Julie is doing a great job of describing everything from the hilarity to the beauty of it all😘😘😘😘😘😘

    Liked by 2 people

    1. <3<3 We're having so much darn fun Betty…Oh my gosh. Thank you! Today we hit the Grand Canyon! Can't wait!

      Like

  5. “How’s the wi-fi in your wigwam?” You guys are hilarious! Thanks for starting my morning with a belly laugh! Isn’t America beautiful? I don’t think you truly appreciate that unless you travel from east to west in a vehicle. Enjoy the sights you have planned for today. They will be amazing!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love Trudi’s words…”American, indeed the beautiful.” ❤
      Thanks so much, Cathy!

      Like

  6. tcapozella says:

    Great headline! I so look forward to reading this every day I’m pretty sure I will be going through withdrawal once you are back. Thanks for sharing all these beautiful pictures of our Countryside! 💜

    Like

    1. Thank you so much Tracy, we’re having so much darn fun…

      Like

  7. rinabe says:

    I vacillate between wanting to cry and laughing at your wonderful BM so aptly named #2! You girls really are livin’ the life this trip and I want to thank you for taking me along on the ride. At the end of the day, it really is all about love. I’m wishing you all the best on your journey. Take care and Godspeed!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Thanks so much, Tracy! We’re having so much darn fun….

    Like

  9. tswonger says:

    Do wigwams have bathrooms in them? I’ve always wondered?

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Tom Weber says:

    We just missed you again! We were in Petrified Forest Nat’l Park right at closing time and had a late dinner in Holbrook – (Mr Maesta’s Family Restaurant), and stayed the night in Williams, AZ. Today’s the Grand Canyon – you may have heard of it? We’ll be looking for ya!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. IMG_4768.JPG. Thanks for the travel tip, good buddy… We’ll check the map for this Grand Canyon you speak of! We saw this sign at the petrified forest yesterday and thought of you! Party on scholar/gentleman!

      Like

      1. Darn, the pic didn’t go they did it? It was a rest room sign, lol

        Like

  11. Lori says:

    I just discovered this blog today. I saw it on a “Facebook suggestion” post. Caught my eye because it said Moffitt Cancer center. My mother was a patient there. Anywho, I have binge watched TV shows in the past, and can now proudly say, I have binge blogged . I had to read every word of this wonderful journey ! There is nothing more I can wish you that you don’t already have ; love, life, friendship, Godspeed and Uranus Fudge. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. what a lovely comment, thank you so much, Lori. Welcome. Come and sit a spell.

      Like

  12. Susan Hines Manjoine says:

    I can’t wait to open the blog everyday and find myself even going back and reading previous days to be sure I didn’t miss anything ! As I share your story with co-workers and family, I tell them that l laugh so hard I cry and then sometimes I just cry. I marvel at Patty and her strength, her journey and especially her sense of humor and I envy all of you for getting to share it all with her. I don’t know what I’m going to do when your trip is complete – I guess you’ll just have to keep blogging in Florida! Janey – thanks for being the connection that let me enjoy every minute of this trip!
    Safe travels you lovely ladies!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What a lovely message, thanks Susan!

      Like

    2. We marvel at her too, Susan. We do. sh’s a true blue spectacle. Thank you so much for joining us.

      Like

  13. Janey's Kid says:

    I was pretty sure Michael was about pie? Love is good too I guess ;P

    Like

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