10:25 p.m.

Today I got battered by the road. So much for restoration.

I left Oklahoma City around 8 am and was met head-on by straight line winds from the west clocked at 20 mph with gusts that took poor little Loretta (my camper) and threw her all over I-40. I never achieved speeds above 45 mph. I spent the first six hours in agony, cursing the winds and tensing my body, at times "leaning into it" from the drivers seat with my whole being as if I could magically cut through the tension and break us free. Eventually, afer wrestling with that mighty, invisible wind, I gave in. 

I seem to encounter the same lessons over and over again. Today it was s.l.o.w. d.o.w.n., a common one for me. Once I gave into the inevitable pace of the day I started to notice more. I felt the breath in my body. I felt how my skin stuck to the leather seat. I felt the sun burning the bare, winter flesh of my left arm as it hung out the window. I watched the countryside change from high windy plains that sprout wind turbines to mesas that grow pinion pine and jet black cattle.  I came alive and I stopped fighting the wind. I moved into the right lane, flipped on my hazards, found a classic country station on the radio and drove at 45 miles per hour until the sun started to set. 

Where I ended up after 11 hours of that slow crawl was Tucumcare (pronounced too-kum-cary) New Mexcio. It's a gem off Route 66 where the first two people I met, upon hearing that I was moving to Taos, responded CONGRATULATIONS! and both immediately offered their own route of how best to get there, complete with a list of the best diners on the way and one cell phone number of a local rancher in case I get into trouble. The hospitality makes me feel like I am back home...