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Bookends at Book Cliffs

It has been a long time since I have had this much drama in my RV travels. And once again it happened at the foot of Book Cliffs. What is it about this place?

How can a person get good out of a disaster like needing a new engine at 25,500 miles on the odometer? Yes, it is covered by the powertrain warranty. Together with double digit inflation and supply shortages of all kinds, this is a sobering time.

I needed a good way to kill time while waiting -- GM was making the waiting as miserable as possible by giving no tracking number for the engine shipment. My dog, Coffee Girl, and I go to the foot of Book Cliffs every morning and walk some of the trail system in fine autumn weather.

I adopted her during the first drama at Book Cliffs, when my first dog (a miniature poodle) ran off because he was frightened by all the shooting going on just before a hunting season started. Since she is 15 now and has sarcoma (cancer) I guess she has seen both bookends of the Book Cliffs drama.

When a big problem happens, it seems beneficial to focus on:

1. Don't make it worse.

2. Stabilize the situation.

3. Make small improvements on a daily basis, that is, focus on putting a 'few points on the board' instead of on grand cosmic solutions.

 And I thought I was doing that, by going out and knocking off a couple errands. They weren't completely insignificant. Back at the dealership, she told me that nothing was being shipped yesterday, today, or tomorrow from GM.

That was as low as it got. In a few minutes we learned that an engine had come in on a special truck, just as we were talking. This is the canonical 14th day of squatting on the street/empty field by the dealershop.

The first disaster of Book Cliffs also ended on the 14th day, when my little poodle ran up to a couple elk hunters 15 miles north of Book Cliffs and was rescued.

At a time like this, when an individual is helpless and at the mercy of giant organizations and political and economic trends, what else can be done other than crawling inward into your own mind? I don't really prefer this type of thinking because ideas need to move out externally in order to be validated. But desperate times are special.

In both instances, it helped me to imagine a great melodrama being acted out. I ran to the music of Puccini , the perfect music for a catharsis after some tragic wailing -- it is therapy! And it fits a drama that can happen during travel if your 'soul' is rawer and more sensitive, instead of being deadened and anesthetized by the routine comfort and frustration of working and living in one place.