Tandem, An American Love Story

The Gulf of Mexico is less than 50 feet away and threatening to lull us to sleep before 7 pm. We had an 80 mile day, part headwind and part tailwind and averaged nearly 15 mph, so we are feeling lazy. We passed 7,000 miles total today. We couldn’t find a campground again and so we’re camping just above high tide line in somebody’s rangeland. There are cow pies everywhere, fortunately not too fresh. The beach is fairly white sand with lots of pretty shells, but the water is the same muddy color as all the bayous here. The sunset was one of those high-humidity, perfect red orb, things of beauty.

We saw our first alligator earlier today. Not very big, but cute. We’re seeing lots of birds again. Some Ibis in rice fields, lots we can’t identify. If we ever travel in a motor home, we will have an extensive bird book library. Maybe we could pull our library in a bike trailer.

As we got closer to the Gulf, the vegetation got more interesting. Lots of exotic looking palms and ferns in the understory and big trees with Spanish moss. There is water everywhere. We must have been within five feet of sea level all day, except for a couple of bridges.

Lots of things are still flowering and we don’t recognize any of them. There are 10 foot tall cactus that look something like prickly pear and have the same fruit. There are reeds and grasses that must be 15 feet tall.

Interesting roadkill: raccoon, nutria, deer, owl, hawk, snakes, and a young alligator. The humidity ripens them to well past perfection — fortunately we were moving fast.

We met more nice Louisianans, they do seem to love to talk, and the Cajun accent is a joy to hear. We will hate to leave it behind, but Texas beckons.

One thing has been disturbing us. People seem to be very concerned with crime. We started hearing people’s preoccupation with safety around Indiana eastbound. But, the deeper we have come into the South, the more concerned people are for our safety on the road, and their own. We don’t know if it is a real concern, or if it is a product of the severe segregation of the society here by race.


Tandem, An American Love Story — 3 Comments

  1. Thanks for the memories, and the update on your own adventures. That last few days back to Sequim was bitter-sweet after more than a year on the road. We’ve never been the same; a good thing.

  2. What a marvelous and beautifully descriptive article about a simply amazing woman – Karen Landis. I’ve had had the serendipitous experience to create and nurture a friendship with Karen after I underwent a hip replacement and three hip fractures and realized I needed to request the local “Meals on Wheels” service. And of course, if she didn’t have enough on her plate, Karen serves the Chino Valley community two days a week by delivering meals to people in my circumstance.
    I loved Karen the first moment I met her. And when we started chatting I knew I had met a soul mate. I’ve been looking all my life for a role model, a hero, an amazing example of humankind. I don’t know if she realizes what an outstanding example she is of a strong, independent, intelligent, talented woman. Sometimes as women, we have a dentency to undervalue ourselves. But Karen, I want you to know you are the real deal. You are just so beautiful in your authenticity. And I a so appreciative of the value you have added to our environment by caring for the land and the animals under your watchful care. Your abilities and strength simply boggle my mind. And thank you for your loving service to me these past four months. You rock girl!

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