I dreamed last night of Moon Ranch.
In my dream I passed under the wide arch where the words “Moon Ranch” were rendered in wrought iron over the entrance. I dreamed of a wide open place under the night sky, where I watched the stars above turn as if in a wheel overhead.
When I awoke, I was still in Silver City, but that wonderful reality was about to come to an end as well. All good trips must come to an end, as I always say, and this one was about to. After a somewhat greasy breakfast at McDonald’s (close and convenient) I packed my bike, said good-bye to the funky little motel room that had been my home for three days, and Hal and I got on the road toward home. We were taking the south route home, which would cut our travel time by at least two hours. Sometimes, when it’s the last day, I just want to get home. I know the trip is basically over anyway, no sense prolonging the agony of being caught between two worlds: the one on the road, and the one at home.
As I rode NM180 toward NM78, I was thinking of many things. I don’t know why, and it all had to do with how different the last 30 years of my life would have been if this or that had happened. I was trying to get free of those thoughts and enjoy the scenery, remembering how I’d loved it as we rode in, but the thoughts kept creeping back.
When we got to NM78, though, I made myself get focused. The first few miles are straight and open, but then we got to the forest part and the road starts to curve and change elevation. After riding all those technical roads the last couple of days, I was not going to screw up on this easier part. As it was, I must have hit a golf ball sized rock on one of the turns and felt it roll under my tire when I was leaned over. That was weird, I thought as I felt the bike shudder. This segment of the ride, though, was super-fun, and I wished it could last all day. Fun’s over, I thought, as we descended toward 191 and Safford, AZ.
Of course, the minute we started to descend, the heat went up, although I shouldn’t complain because most of the ride home was pleasant because of the mostly cloudy sky. The temperatures didn’t get into the 90s F. until Superior, and the 100s until we were close to home. I was complaining to myself about the ugly old low, hot desert. I started singing “I hate you Arizona …” to myself inside my helmet as we crossed the state line, and wondered again why I am still here. I am 20 years (at least) overdue for a change.
As we went through Gold Canyon, a spectacular thunderstorm was brewing over the Superstition Mountains, and soon the craggy peaks were cloaked in a silver veil of rain. I kept hoping the rain would engulf us, it was within a mile of the road, but it never reached us.
It was a beautiful sight. Clouds and thunderstorms seemed to surround us all day, many times we saw lightning in the distance, but we never got into any rain. I was disappointed about that, but that’s how it goes sometimes.
I got home mid-afternoon as I had said, unpacked, got laundry going, and relaxed. But at least this time I get to basically just re-pack and get ready for the next trip starting on Wednesday! I am really looking forward to it because we are trailering the dirt bikes. I am looking forward to getting down and dirty, exploring some rough back country roads.
I can’t imagine how depressed I will be next week this time when all the summer trips are officially over. But I won’t think about that now.