Day 11: Williams, AZ to Escondido, CA – 467 miles / 746 kms
Odometer: 17819 miles – 4,153 miles driven in total!
We arose early. Although we were sorry to be on our last day of our epic cross-country road trip, we were also excited about beginning the next chapter of our life in California.
We were on the road by 8am, having breakfasted at an odd little café called The Red Garter (back when the West was Wild, the building was a brothel). Mr. Fizgig’s mother joked that we’d probably be home before she was…
With the wind in our sails, we put in a long and boring day. We only stopped to get gas and let Banjo go to the bathroom – at this point, there wasn’t much sight-seeing to be had.
In fact, crossing the border into California was probably the most interesting part of the day – unlike the two checkpoints we passed through in Texas and New Mexico, which is set up to catch illegal immigrants and smugglers, the California checkpoint is for agricultural inspection. We were asked if we had any fruits/ vegetable/ seeds on us. I almost said no, but quickly remembered the two apples I’d bought in New Mexico and the dried fruit from Trader Joe’s in New York. The latter wasn’t a problem, but the inspection officer examined the apples. I guess they weren’t diseased, so on we sped.
We ignored our bladders and bellies for 114 miles, determined to pee and have lunch in Escondido. We arrived at Mr. Fizgig’s parents’ house at 4.20pm, just 10 minutes before his mother got home from work.
It’s hard to put into words the feeling of exhilaration, relief, and disbelief of having arrived. We fell upon our lunch, marvelling at how far we’d travelled.
From here on, I guess my stories will be about California and all the new discoveries I make here. I’m pretty excited to be in a new place! The last 5 years I spent living in Brooklyn was the longest stretch I’d ever lived anywhere, and I was beginning to get itchy feet.
Here’s a last snapshot of our incredible journey, followed by one last anecdote, and a fond farewell to our purring travelling companion…
When I was a little kid, I always used to say when I grew up I was going to be 6ft tall, have big boobs and live in California. To this I now say, Hey! Two outta three ain’t bad!
Goodbye to our trusty mechanical steed, Vlad the Impala! Thanks for a wild trip – I hope you get back to the East Coast safely and see more of the U.S. on your way home! (If anyone rents a grey Chevy Impala 2011 with the license plate number 5AA6558, let me know… I’d love to know where you and Vlad travelled to…)