Zen On Dirt


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It’s funny to me that sometimes the things that are the best for us are the hardest to do. Like flossing. Flossing is good for you. Flossing is a royal pain in the ass.

But really, it’s the the difficulty I have giving up our Tucson home in the summer that fascinates me.


One last girls single-speed ride. One last rattler. 

I know that wandering makes me happy. I know that new experiences, new places, new people, and a whole lot of unknown make me happy. I know that all it takes is leaving the house to make these things happen, but sometimes I struggle to make that first step. Especially when Tucson is so awesome.


Making it to Seis on a Tuesday night ride with daylight to spare? Unheard of!

We spent last week going through our belongings and packing up our house. Each item was examined: Do we need this for the summer? Yes? Put it in that bin. No? Do we need this at all? No? Put it in the trash. Yes? Into the storage bins. 

Several times, we threw up our hands. Why do we have so much stuff? Which is pretty funny because we really don’t have much stuff at all.


Who can ride a slowly leaking tire the longest? Who can pump up said leaking tire the fastest?

Several times I wondered if it was worth it. Why didn’t we just sign a year lease someplace, or take the plunge and buy a place, settle in and then just take trips? We could just leave all of our stuff here, if we forgot something, no worries, we’d be back in a day or two, or week or two.


Somebody is all smiles about his new bike. And matching shorts and helmet. 

Girls rides would continue. Several trips weekly to Seis would continue. Life in Tucson is easy. It’s grand, really. I love it. There are endless mountains to explore. The riding is second to none. It does get hot…and Scott’s allergies leave something to be desired.

But the call of the road… Try as I might, I can’t ignore it, and right now, I have the chance to answer that call completely and totally. So many people tell us to enjoy this lifestyle while we can. Life situations change and maybe someday we won’t be able to pack all of our belongings into a small storage space and point two cars north each summer. But right now we can, and for that, I’m grateful.


Try as he might, he couldn’t destroy his big chain ring…or get up the step. 

The stress and anxiety associated with the last day of a lease never gets any better. The last minute packing. The scrubbing, cleaning, and dusting. Loading the cars in a way that we can find what we’ll need in the immediate future. Looking at the two halfway packed cars and asking, Is this really all we need for six months of living?


Dylan getting ready to set off for the CDT tequila-tree style

The white-knuckled driving through Phoenix after waving good-bye to our little barrio house did nothing to ease the stress. It wasn’t until we pulled onto a dirt road just outside of Flagstaff and threw out our sleeping pads and bags out under the stars that it sunk in.




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