Home is Where the Tent Is

I'm watching Seb string a string between two trees for his clothesline.  I'd say "our clothesline", but no garment of mine ever sees a sud.  Despite my profoundly masculine exterior, I'm really all sugar and spice and everything nice inside, and therefore my perspiration smells like fresh-baked bread on a crisp fall morning.  I can't tell you how many times I've walked by people at the gym and heard "There goes Doughboy".  You get used to it.  Seb, sadly, is about to hang up all his snips, snails, and puppy dog tails, cursed as he is with the y-is-for-yucky chromosome.  But let's table the confused-gender talk for now, and move on to a selective description of our progress.

We left Palo Verde late yesterday morning, lingering over the breakfast Nancy made us: hot cereal with saffron, apricots, cherry, raisins, and diced (peeled first - sheesh!) almonds - we didna wanta goh.  But go we went, toward the town of Blythe.  Now when I write "Blythe", I'm sure in your head you're saying "Bl-eye-the".  The locals, on the other hand, pronounce their town name "Blit."  As in, "Ah live in Blit."  - sort of the sound children make when you ask them if they like brussel sprouts.  It was weird.  Wearing spandex and saying Blyyyyythe, we're lucking we escaped with our lyyyyyves.

For those of you eagerly following along on Google Maps, we next headed east on I-10 across the Colorado river, aiming for Quartzsite, Arizona (that's right, we finally crossed a state) home of the perpetual flea market.  The sun had been setting in California a little after five, so when we left Blit at 3-ish, we figured we could still make the 25 miles to Q-town, headwind and uphill be damned, without it being utterly dark when we got there.  Picture my consternation when, 10 miles east of Blyyyyyythe I look at my Garmin and it says 4:45 pm (Whaaaat?  Not another hallucination!  The stuff seems to take forever to leave your system).  So, not wanting to pedal on the interstate in the dark, again, we immediately bailed at the closed-for-repairs rest stop that just happened to lie conveniently ahead.  As we set up camp feverishly at our own private rest stop - no water but the plugs worked - in a race against time and the demon darkness, a sneaky, dawning thought occurred to me; something about, you know, Pacific Time, Mountain Time, Central Time, and so on.  A quick confirmation, using non-GPS time devices, indicated that we'd magically lost an hour crossing the Colorado river (even with water tables at historic lows, that's one wide river).  Suddenly the sun didn't appear to be in such a hurry to fall.  Suddenly I felt like a boob.  And that brings us back to the question of gender orientation...