I drove up to Reno today. I stopped at CompUSA to pick up a Java programming language development environment (CodeWarrior). I’m going to be home-schooling Shay on Java programming and computer science.

I then drove over to Barnes and Noble, where I picked up a Java textbook as well as several hardcovers to read on the road (A World Full Of Gods – Keith Hopkins, A Density of Souls – Christopher Rice, The Heartsong of Charging Elk – James Welch). I’ve also got a copy of Persuasion by Jane Austen.

I find it hard to go to sleep without reading. It gives my brain a chance to downshift. If I don’t read, my head churns with thoughts and I toss and turn all night.

As I filled up with gasoline on my way back, a woman approached and asked if I was from Chile. If I were quicker, I would have replied “°Claro que no!” but instead I said “No, why?” She had seen the lettering I added to my storage box saying “Caravana Pan-Americana San Francisco, USA a Tierra del Fuego”. “I’ve been to Tierra del Fuego!” she said “I’m from Chile!” She told me that TdF was beautiful, as was Chile and Santiago, her home town. I gave her my business card, and she promised to email.

Jeanne and Shay (foreground) & Ron (background)

Jeanne arrived at around 8pm, and as I write this she and Shay are setting up for the night. Re-arranging sounds are coming from their vehicle, parked next to mine here in Carson City.

I’ve spent the last few days getting the car ready for the trip across the country, and I’m starting to feel very comfortable. Jeanne is where I was at Syncro Safari… everything has been thrown into her van and not yet sorted, leaving her feeling somewhat out-of-sorts.

After Jeanne makes the beds, she opens a case of wine she’s brought and opens a bottle to celebrate our get-together. Shay brings out some cheese and bread, and I contribute some veggie pepperoni to the feast. We eat and talk for a few hours, while Bebel Gilberto sings in Portuguese from my van.

caravana pan americana!

Now we’ve retreated to our vans. It’s freezing out (maybe literally… I need to get a thermometer.) I’m running the P4 heater, which is pumping out nice hot air at my feet. Tomorrow we set off together towards Miami. The adventure has begun.


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