The Dead of Winter - A Florida Road Trip
Published by Nevada Motojicho in Nudist/Naturist · 16 January 2023
Tags: On, the, road, again...
Tags: On, the, road, again...
The Dead of Winter
A Florida Road Trip
I’ve been on the road for the last 2 months – I’ve been gone since Thanksgiving. Oh, happy holidays! I needed to escape from everything, especially television and social media. I needed to turn it off and get away, but I didn’t turn it off entirely, I decorated the minivan with Christmas lights. The truckers could at least see me coming down the road. I had the lights up from Christmas Eve through New Year’s Day when eventually, Cooper (the dog) chewed through the wiring. It was my own fault; I had parked in a space where he could watch my every move as I entered a convenience store. As a result of separation anxiety, he bit right through the wires. It sure is a good thing the engine and the power were off otherwise; it could have been lights out for sure. Stupid dog – thank God he’s okay. I never thought in a million years... yep, like having kids.
Speaking of a million years, I don’t remember the last time I posted, but I think it was in September when I first got home from my trip to Annapolis. That was my first road trip with the minivan. I didn’t plan that trip out very well and I didn’t include casual off-the-road site seeing and I also remember not liking being attached to a timeline for getting to and from. I especially hated the trucks and constantly being pinned in by them, and I remember just wanting to get off the Interstate and see the countryside instead. I will admit that there were some great Rest Stops that had pull-out camping spots with private picnic areas. The one pictured here was somewhere in Kansas and included night time security; I felt very comfortable.
The sole purpose for that trip was to get Daniel’s motor scooter to my dad so he could use it while spending the summer up north. That was a hectic trip, and I knew that for my future trips, I would need to plan them to be timeline free and consider getting off the Interstate more to include plenty of the “scenic loops.”
This trip, I did just that. My father is currently in Florida where he spends the winter and I just got back from seeing him. I took my time with this trip. I knew I wanted to go to Florida to bring in the new year with my 88-year-old father. Although he is healthy (for the most part), I know there aren’t many more of these times to share with him and it felt important.
Taking my time and enjoying the sites on this trip was an important consideration. And although I may not have been naked as much as I would be in summer, the nature all around me was very naked. You can’t miss this perfectly shaped breast staring at you from the center of the roadway.
I had to pull over and take a closer look. Coming or going in either direction, this is what you see, a breast with a perfect nipple on top.
Driving through the southwest is home to some of the most beautiful landscapes (and skies) you’ll find. I especially love New Mexico but, on this trip, it was the coldest place on the planet. The sunrises and sunsets were beautiful though, when the sun came up from behind the mountains, there would be this point in which everything tinted colors that are too intense to be photographed – at least with my old iPhone.
Because of the cold weather, I needed to continue experimenting with stuff for the van. Like finding ways of staying warm in winter. Becoming a well-prepared Roadie isn’t easy. When I went to Annapolis last September, the weather was still warm, and so I got away with running a couple of battery-operated fans for overnight comfort. I had bug netting over the windows, so I was able to get a cross ventilation. Summer was survivable.
Winter’s a different story, unlike summer, taking off clothing to stay comfortable isn’t an option. I would say that outside of being wrapped up naked in an electric blanket while I slept, I remained clothed for most of this trip. It wasn’t until I got to my dad’s place in Florida that it was warm enough to get naked. And yes, my dad is cool with it. Truly though, I needed to turn the pool heater up because the water was too cold for me. Daytime temperatures were only in the mid-70’s the whole time I was there, and I don’t think my dad uses the pool so it was cold. I was hoping everything would be warmer once I got to Florida but such luck.
It was cold throughout the entire southern region. I mostly followed the Interstate 10, but I did take many side roads just to get away from the trucks. It was much more relaxing to do that. But being as cold as it was, I had to experiment with a variety of things I’ve been purchasing. I had bought a small ceramic heater from Walmart, but I immediately discarded it as an option. It runs at 700-watts an hour and that burns up all my battery resources within a couple of hours.
I liked this rock formation; it looks so prehistoric like there should be dinosaurs roaming about. I think it was somewhere in Arizona. It could have been Texas, but I think it was outside of Phoenix. Maybe Tucson. I need to start writing these things down.
Anyway, the next logical thing for me to try was to see how much gasoline it would take to have the vehicle idling with the heater running. Well of course that depends on at what point you start looking at your fuel gauge. Gas tanks usually empty faster toward the tail end rather than when full. Regardless, I estimated that it took less than an eighth of a tank to idle for 3 hours with the vehicle’s interior heater turned on to approximately 70 degrees. That’s not bad but I wouldn’t want to be doing it too far off the grid. In the end, I found that the electric blanket was the best, and safest. It used the least amount of energy at only 130-watts per hour. It also helped keep the dogs settled-in when I drove through the night.
Aren’t these skies cool? I really like this part of being on the road. The beauty of nature just being nature. You also get to meet interesting people along the way. Everyone has a story and some of them are rather fun to listen to. Since everyone has a dog, everyone needs to pull over for a pee break.
There are small roadside gas stations along the way as well. These are place where you’ll find the homeless, each with a story about how this is all temporary and how, for whatever reason, their Social Security didn’t come. I don’t smoke, but I bought a pack of cigarettes so that when I’d meet up these folks, I could offer them a couple smokes to get them through – it's gold to them. As sad as it is, it’s also part of what you see on the road – you get to appreciate people’s circumstances, and you get to thank the good Lord for all you have.
Part of the reasoning behind me getting the minivan was to allow me more time to spend with family. Sure, the family has spent time together over the years and all of us have made trips back and forth. But now that I’m older myself, connecting with the family seems to be more important. Watching my father age is difficult. That’s why this trip was so important.
I wanted to receive what’s called “my father’s blessing” and I wanted to receive it in person this year. It’s an old French/Canadian family tradition that’s been passed down from father to son ever since my Great-Great Grandfather’s time. Yes, it’s patriarchy but whatever! In my family, the father gives his son(s) a special blessing on New Year’s Day. It includes mentioning one’s responsibility as head of the family and in providing for not only one’s own family, but extended family. Nonetheless, and no matter how you feel about patriarchy, it was important for me to receive my father’s blessing in-person this year. The last time it was done in person was in 1984 – getting it over the phone isn’t the same.
I’ve put 10,000 miles on this minivan since Labor Day. I expect to put another 10 on it before the end of this year. I have a trip to Maine planned for the first week of June, and another trip sometime in September to Maryland/Pennsylvania for my youngest niece’s wedding. The trip to Maine will be interesting as I will be heading to the town where I was born. I was born in the same town as my dad, Old Orchard Beach. Old Orchard is a small coastal town in southern Maine and, here’s a Ripley’s Believe It or Not for you, it was home to the very first carousel in the United States. Truth. It’s an interesting place and I can’t wait to revisit.
I’ll keep you posted on my upcoming trips as there might be opportunities for us to meet up. I'll be passing through a town near you soon; that is unless you live in France.
Enjoy your naked day my friends!
*MotoBlog is a collection of thoughts, insights and stories based on true life experiences – gained by the misguided trust in others.
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