Howdy folks!

It’s been a few days since I had a chance to write, and by a few days I guess I mean weeks! Wow, time has really been flying. It’s been a crazy adjustment period as I’ve begun settling into my duties as PCVL and have started learning about Southern Province and Zambia.

We’ll catch up to date in the next few days, but for now let’s rewind time. I want to tell you about our drive out to Colorado, and our arrival in Cortez.

We’d been on the road for a few hours, packed up the night before, and headed off into the morning sunrise at the crack of dawn. I was pretty out of it, half asleep and three quarters jet lagged. It’s a bit blurry thinking back to it now, but I’m sure I was asleep for most of the drive. I remember the twists and turns of the old familiar highway reaching up into Flagstaff from Sedona, and the sweet cold morning air as we got gas and some snacks at the gas station. Then we hopped back up into the truck and headed east. We dropped down onto the plains as we approached Page, Arizona and were surprised to read signs saying that the roads had washed out. Luckily our turn off had survived and we made our connection. Driving out across that eerie expanse of land, beautiful, and yet shocking. What was normally a stark, dry, desert brown has been transformed into a magnificent scene of greenery and clouds. The early rains had done their work and created beautiful scenery as we crossed the Reservation and proceeded towards the Four Corners area.

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Green plains on the Reservation

We neared the four corners area, and stopped at an old familiar spot – Tsegi, Arizona. There’s an old Inn there on the side of the road that hasn’t changed in the last twenty years. It’s a perfect little rest stop tucked on the side of the Tsegi valley and they serve a mean plate of Navajo fry bread. We ate lunch, snapped a few photos and piled back into our truck. We were on the road again, but almost there.

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Tsegi, Arizona – Beautiful valley

Exhausted and with the sun starting a settle toward the horizon, we turned onto familiar roads and headed into Cortez, Colorado. The approach isn’t much to talk about, a lot of old farms, businesses and billboards, but then your turn onto main street, and it’s a whole different place. Full of character, fun restaurants and small town charm. We drove through, and made a left out toward Dolores, driving through some back roads and seeing familiar blocks of farmland and homes. We wound our way through fields soaking in the evening rays, and huge blocks of irrigation equipment dutifully creaking and groaning their way in huge circles.

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Arriving in Dolores, Colorado

As we drove past farms and open fields, the beauty and simplicity of it struck me. It was just so relaxing that I had to struggle to capture the moment, and take another photo.

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Then we made the turn, and headed down to Casa Cielo, a beautiful Bed and Breakfast that’s run by longtime family friends, on the Cortez/Dolores border.

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It was the crackle and crunch of the warm gravel that completed the series of memories in my mind, the smell of trees and fresh land, irrigation and grain being grown. The sweet crisp bite to the Colorado air. There’s nothing quite like it, that’s for sure. Nothing else that can say, “Welcome Home. You were born here.”

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Of course, a six pack of these didn’t hurt either.