I turned 30 last month and to welcome myself into that new chapter of my life I went on a weekend trip to Arizona & drove down Route 66. I started on Route 66 in San Bernardino and after a lot of stop & go decided to just focus on getting to Arizona at a decent time since I wanted to see the old route, not so much the parts that are in heavily populated areas. I stayed at the El Trovatore motel in Kingman. The motel is Route 66 themed and each room is themed after a celebrity. I was able to choose my room & I chose the James Dean room. The owners are wonderful people, they’re extremely friendly & knowledgeable on the area. When I checked in I was given a history lesson of the area, an Arizona map, and a Route 66 pin.
I spent the evening planning my drive back through California, and watching old black & white movies. In the morning I headed out; first stop was a 50’s diner for breakfast in town.
I then headed off down the road toward Oatman. This was my favorite stop. Oatman is an old Western town with wild burros roaming the streets. I paid $1 for a bag of burro food to feed some, watched a gun show, and wandered through the shops.
After that I just drove down the route and let the road & whatever was on it be my adventure. The road is falling apart in a lot of spots in California so I kept encountering “road closed” signs. There was a dirt road leading off & around to the other side at each of these spots. When I faced the first sign I took a few minutes to decide if I wanted to go down that dirt road or turn around to get back on the main highway. Ever since my tire blew out on the drive home from Tahoe years ago…I’ve had that fear in the back of my mind. Who knows what could be lying there on that dirt road waiting to puncture my tire, or what if I lose traction and can’t go forward or backward? I decided to go for it and to trust that my car would make it ok…and it did…about 4 different times on 4 different dirt road detours.
I drove down the road until the sun started to set and then went back to the main highway to go home. At that point Route 66 was right next to the freeway which made for an easy transition.
Once home I got Mexican food for dinner, and bought a giant cupcake so I could blow out candles.