Monday, March 24, 2008

Ebb and Flow of The Universe

There is a certain ebb and flow to the universe. The tide comes in, the tide goes out and the end is the same as the beginning. To fret and worry too much about the interim is a waste. There are good times and bad, and when all is summarized, it is just time.

For the past several weekends over the course of a few months I have been spending considerable amounts of time attempting to repair my ex-wife's car. It wasn't in terribly good shape when we bought it. We were told that it needed new struts, new engine mounts and a little oil change, and that was it.

Well, I don't think the guy was completely straight up with us. One of the spark plug cables was busted. Two of the spark plugs were completely destroyed to the point where the little four cylinder engine was only running on two cylinders. The heater hoses were in such a state of disintegration that they were literally falling apart. Several weekends, a few skinned knuckles and probably too much money was spent repairing these, as well as some other problems.

The car was at the point where I felt safe riding in it. The motor seemed to be purring and not overheating or clanking. New tires let the car track straight and true down the highway and there was a certain satisfaction to driving this machine around.

Apparently she had had enough. This weekend, on the way home from picking up my daughter from the airport, the engine threw a rod. That car is now, for the most part, scrap.

Ebb and flow.

Saturday was quite the opposite adventure. I awoke about eight, fired up my bike and headed out of town. I rode out of Las Vegas to the West, past Red Rock Canyon. There is always a smile on my face when I can see Las Vegas in my rear-view mirrors.

Out on State Route 160, traffic was light and the ride beautiful. I was surprised at how willing my little Rebel was behaving. 75 miles per hour was no problem at all.

I arrive in Pahrump, NV for smokes and coffee. After a pleasant chat with an elderly gentleman about motorcycles and trucking, I continue North to Johnnie, Nevada. For the most part, Johnnie is a ghost town. There is a house trailer, and another building that could pass as a house, but that is the only thing there that could be classified as recent.

Old mining equipment and remnants of buildings still litter the desert there. Twenty minutes or so of riding the trails and I am back on the asphalt to Crystal, Nevada.

There isn't much there, in the little town of Crystal. Two legal brothels, a Museum of Brothel Art (that just happens to be closed for renovations), very small bar, a Piper airplane on a desert landing strip and a few houses. After a brief chat with the owner of the plane, and a more than brief lamenting that I had no camera, I left on the road I came in on. It is little more than asphalted desert rubble.

Purple and white and yellow desert wildflowers are blooming all throughout the area. Some sort of small cactus is blooming as well. Its blooms looking more like a tangle of red hair than a flower.

I stop again at Pahrump and have lunch at the Pahrump Cafe. Should anyone ride your bike through this quaint, quiet little town, I highly recommend it. Just stop at a gas station and ask for directions.

I try to delay my inevitable return to Las Vegas by riding a lonesome desert road out to California. There were more motorcycles on that road than cars or trucks. It was beautiful.

Returning, riding past Red Rock Canyon, I feel the pressures of Las Vegas begin their assault. I will miss the adventure of riding out into the desert and its inherent solitude, but I will not miss Las Vegas.

So, 250 miles later, I park my bike and crack open a beer.

It's all ebb and flow. Fighting against it will only tire you out and piss you off.

View Larger Map...This map is not accurate and shows the route where I rode into California incorrectly. Click the "View Larger Map" for a more accurate representation...

1 comment:

Doug C said...

An excellent narrative about the theraputic nature of riding on two wheels.

Sorry to hear about the ex's car. Same thing happened to my vehicle after spending about a grand on repairs. Should've said enough is enough, but I always want to eek out a few more miles.

Thanks for the post!