Thoughts and a Route Map

I’ve now been home for a few days and am over the Jet Lag. I went back to work yesterday to a world completely removed from my trip. I work with computers and things had gone horribly wrong the day before and I walked into a maelstrom of conflicting priorities with many systems down and everyone claiming ‘their’ system needed to be up ‘now’. Hopefully that is all resolved now,

Many colleagues have asked about my trip and I’ve told them all how much I’ve enjoyed it, and how good, and positive, it has been for me. I’ve been asked to create a slideshow of pictures and present these to my colleagues, so will be doing that over the next few days.

America, Route 66 and PCH seem a world away, and geographically they are, but they are still alive in my memory, and will be forever. I’ve been asked many times what the highlights of the trip were and there are many. Here (in no particular order of priority) are some:

  • The kind people I met
  • Santa Domingo Pueblo
  • Chicago Blues
  • The 9′ alignment
  • The kind people I met
  • The Elephant Seals
  • Whale Watching
  • Half Moon Bay
  • Grand Canyon
  • The kind people I met
  • Seligman and Angel Delgadillo
  • Big Sur
  • Hurst Castle
  • ‘Sky Deck’ in Chicago
  • Seeing Bob again
  • Oh, bugger it! ALL OF IT!

I really got used to, and enjoyed, the life of getting up, getting on the bike, travelling according to my whim and then stopping for the night. I want to do more of this :)

I met some great people, not ‘great’ in the sense of ‘save the world’, but great in the sense of being gratifyingly human, people prepared to befriend, and help, a fellow human being. People interested, and intrigued enough with my accent to take the time, and trouble, to ask about, and engage with, my story. People of dignity, happy to share their lives with a person from another culture. Lastly the people enthused enough, and motivated enough, to promote, maintain and support ‘The Mother Road’.

This journey, for me, has been more than a trip down an old road clocking the sights as I go. It has been a major step forward in my life. It has enabled me to gain a greater closure and acceptance of my current circumstances and has shown me that I can move on without guilt from the past.

Now I have completed the trip I can show my actual route (I told you in my initial ‘Itinerary’ post I wouldn’t stick to it, and I didn’t!):

You can see it in more detail HERE

Please feel free to comment via the ‘Leave a Reply’ section, If that’s a question, I’ll do my best to answer. The comments I have received so far have made the effort of creating this blog well worth it. I thank you for your feedback.

Thanks for reading 😀


On My Way Home

Today has mainly been about getting ready to go home. I’ve managed to get everything in my roll bag, so didn’t have to buy another suitcase. I spent most of the morning catching up with my blog and chatting with friends and family in the UK, both by ‘phone and via Facebook. The shuttle I’d booked arrived on time and I was soon at the airport.

I’m currently writing this at the boarding gate whilst waiting for my flight to be called. I’ve spent an hour and a half in the bar having a couple of drinks and a pizza for lunch. Once again the Brit accent worked and I spent most of the time chatting with Jacqueline, a businesswoman from San Francisco on her way to her family’s Paris holiday flat for a couple of weeks holiday.

All to soon I’ll be back in the UK!

San Francisco

Today was the day to give the bike back to its rightful owners. I after a nice breakfast in a small coffee shop just down from the hotel I set off for my last mile on the Harley, stopping just short of the rental drop off to fill the tank. Whilst not a Harley fan I’ve become quite attached to the bike. It’s a good bike to do a trip like this on, not least because it has the most comfortable seat of any motorcycle I’ve ever ridden (and that’s a lot!).A quick inspection and signature and that was it, I was without transport. Bob had given me a map of the bus routes for San Francisco so I planned to take the bus to Golden Gate Bridge. In all my trips to San Francisco I’ve never been there. I could have taken a taxi, but the bus allows you to see, and hear the locals going about their daily business and so, for me is more interesting.

Continue reading

The Last Stop

I’ve reached my last stop of the trip, the Phoenix Hotel in San Francisco, after putting 3362 miles under the wheels of the bike, with just over a mile to do to drop the bike off at the Rental company left to do. I’m now starting to feel rather sad as it feels as though ‘the end is nigh’ and I guess it is for this trip. I’ve become rather used to life on the road and have been anxious to get on the road each morning. I could very happily re-pack the bike and get on it again tomorrow morning and continue north up Highway 1 and then on to the Canadian border.

Continue reading

Elephants and Castle

It’s been a low mileage day, only a little over 60 miles, but one full of great sights, so plenty of pics to follow! I’d intended to be in Carmel tonight (140 miles), but am currently in a motel in San Simeon. It started with a Facebook chat with my friend Sarah this morning, who mentioned that she’d enjoyed her time in San Simeon some years before, so I decided to have a look on my way.

Continue reading

A Short One

This will be a short post as I’ve mostly been lazing around today!

After a laid back breakfast I headed for the beach and spent three or so hours there, leaving around two just as the sun got to its highest to make suer I didn’t become lobster coloured. It was a great beach backed by cliffs and had several seals sunbathing on rocks out in the bay. No pics as it wasn’t the sort of beach you take pics on.

Continue reading

On the Coast

A nice short ride today, just 140 miles, with about half of it on the Interstate. Where possible I took Highway 1 which is more of a back road, so more interesting to ride. I had a great lunch of BBQd beef ribs, pork n beans and salad. The ribs had been BBQd over oak on an open BBQ just outside the restaurant (The Oak Pit BBQ Company, Arroyo Grande, CA 93420). The whole meal, though simple, was one of the best I’ve had in the ‘States, and it was only $12!

Continue reading

The End of the Mother Road

Two thousand seven hundred and eighty seven miles from the start in Chicago thirteen days ago, I today reached the end of Route 66. It has been an amazing journey, not only for the people I’ve met and the places, and sights, I’ve seen, but also emotionally. Simone and I had planned to do this journey together, and now I’ve finished it alone for both of us. Tomorrow (probably today now in the UK) would have been our thirtieth wedding anniversary and I have to confess to having tears running down my cheeks as I write this. I wouldn’t have missed this journey for the world , but I wish we could have done it together. As it is Simone has been with me in spirit all the way. I’m very sad in a way that this part of my journey is over.

Continue reading

Just Deserts

It’s been a day of long miles across arid and featureless desert (made more so by the mist!). I made an early start in an effort to get ahead of the heat. As I got on the bike shortly before 7 am the temperature was already around 90F (32C). once out of Needles and heading into the desert I noticed that it was misty, and as I rode into the mist the temperature dropped to below 80F (27C) :)

Continue reading