I am currently writing to you from Omaha, Nebraska. Let me give you a little post-London update to explain to you how I ended up here.
After returning home from London for Christmas break, I headed back to Newberg, Oregon to complete my last semester at George Fox University. I nannied throughout the semester, studied occasionally, learned a ton, and discovered a passion for gardening and desire for creating a self-sustainable home. I graduated on May first with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a minor in International studies. I lived in Newberg for most of the summer, working for a woman named Leigh who owns a bed and breakfast near campus. I helped turn over the bed and breakfast, gardened, and did all sorts of odd jobs. The summer was absolutely beautiful and helped me to realize how much I love Oregon!
In the beginning of August, I packed up my car and drove home to San Diego with two of my very dear friends, Dan and Brett. I spent two weeks at home with my friends and family and then packed up my car again, this time for a much different sort of trip.
Beginning in September, I will be living in a poor neighborhood of Atlanta, Georgia. I will spend a year there, living in intentional Christian community with four other girls, volunteering at a community service site in the community, and spreading the love of Christ by building relationships with my neighbors. But more on that subject later… I decided to bring my car to Atlanta, and why not explore my country on the way? So, on Wednesday, my friend Steve and I left San Diego and headed East for a six-day road trip through fifteen states.
States: California and Arizona
Distance: 611 miles
Destination: Grand Canyon Village, Arizona
We woke up early, finished packing up my car, and left San Diego around 8:30am to drive across Arizona. We stopped in Kingman, Arizona for lunch at In ’N’ Out... the very last one along our route. We kept driving and discovered that Arizona has been holding out on us; regardless of its dry and dreary edges, the heart of Arizona is absolutely beautiful, green, and filled with trees and wildflowers. Our first destination was the Grand Canyon, which was beautiful and exactly how I expected it. It is big, dry, and looks just like every picture you’ve ever seen of it. We walked around the South Rim for a while before continuing on for another hour to the tiny town of Cameron, where we spent the first night.
States: Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Colorado
Distance: 593 miles
Destination: Denver, Colorado
We woke up at 6:00am to prepare for our longest day of driving. We stopped at the four corners, which was a fun little detour, even though New Mexico made us pay them $6 to be there! (New Mexico is by far my least favorite state!) We found out that Colorado is absolutely gorgeous and I now understand why everyone loves it so much! It reminded me of Oregon a tiny bit, but is much drier and grandeur. We made it to Denver around 7:00 and met up with my friend Marissa who recently moved there to attend University of Denver for her MSW. It was wonderful to hang out with her (and her cat Shadowz)!
States: Colorado and Nebraska
Distance: 543 miles
Destination: Omaha, Nebraska
We left Colorado this morning and drove across the entire state of Nebraska, which can only be described with one word: CORN! The entire state is simply fields and fields of corn. Needless to say, the drive was quite boring, so we listened to a couple chapters of Harry Potter on CD. We took a short stop at the State Capitol Building in Lincoln and then finally made it to Omaha, where I am now. We are staying on an organic vegetable farm with a girl named Terra and two guys named Matt, one of whom recently moved here from Portland to help out on the farm. They’ve been extremely nice to us and recommended some fun places to hang out in downtown Omaha, so we checked it out. They have a really awesome Indie music scene, although I was bummed to find out that one of my favorite bands, She & Him, are playing here tomorrow night! We’ll just barely miss it! Regardless, Omaha is awesome!
Much more driving tomorrow!
From Omaha, with love