A Travellerspoint blog

To Phoenix and Back Again

We get subway for dinner, and the guy we bought Jeremy's present for comes in with his whole family! He waves to us and thanks us for buying his art. After that we drive, and drive, and drive, all the way to Phoenix to pick up my plates and title along with the motorcycle. Oh yeah, and I got pulled over by 2 cops while not having any proof of ownership of the car, or insurance. My license plate light was out. 5 min later down the road, my licence plate light was still out, hence the 2nd cop. We told him that it was a new car, and we were driving back to Phoenix to pick up the plates and title so we could get insurance, but that we had insurance on our other vehicle. The cop said that proof that we were insured was good enough for now... but Joe does not have his insurance card. He took all the important documents out of the bike, so we know its not there, and now both of us are driving w/o proof of insurance. Great. The cop still lets us off with a Warning/ Repair ticket that I had to mail in with my signature within 5 days saying I fixed the hazardous problem. The second cop repeatedly reassured us he wasn't messing with us and that he needed to document why he pulled us over and letting us go w/o a ticket. He was also excited that the guy who pulled us over the first time was in his training classes for the police academy. I pretended to think it was a small world for the guy, but honestly, I'm from the Northeast, and driving around the Southwest, I would be shocked if they weren't in the same class (no offense, there just aren't that many people who live here). Also, the first cop was shocked that we were white and spoke English. And no, he wasn't expecting Spanish, he was expecting Navajo (so cool that some people still only speak Navajo around here. We heard a guy about our age at the Subway on his cell speaking fluent Navajo. It was really cool.)

We make a pit stop at our favorite Wal-Mart in Flagstaff (the one where we tried to steal my car with a spare key) and Joe volunteered to go out in the 30 degree weather and replace the light bulb. It wasn't easy, or quick. the thing was broken in the socket, so he had to get out just about every tool we brought to finally get the thing apart. Putting it back together, as usual, was much easier.

We slept in a motel parking lot, and the next morning we rushed out dark and early and killed some time before going to pick up out stuff. When we get there the guy looks at us with eyes that said "Oh crap." He told us he could get the title ready by 5, and so we get the bike and drive around little Mexico for a few hours. Most people in this part of Phoenix spoke Spanish, and many only spoke Spanish. We got me a new tire (a metal band was sticking out of my old one, but it still worked for some reason), and when I say new, I mean used. We saved $90 getting a used tire! The guy was hard to understand, but he was the coolest thing! The shop was all outdoors, all the tires, all the equipment, even the lifts. So he helped us pick out a tire, then I pulled up onto the lift. This was all things I'd done before, but now I got to watch him masterfully take my rim off the tire, lube up the other tire, and then swirl the rim inside. His movement reminded me of a baker smoothing out the icing on the side of a circular cake. Then he took it over to a pool of water and soaked the tire. After he put the tire on my car Joe asked if he could also put air in all of my tires, and he did with nothing more than a smile and a nod.

Isn't it sad that I found that experience extraordinary?

Then we went to a Mexican restaurant to get Margarita's, and they said they can't sell alcohol b/c they are located next to a church! Did you know that? They weren't happy about the situation either. So we went down the street to another Mexican restaurant, and our waitress didn't speak a lick of English... and they were out of Margaritas, so we got pina coladas instead (and they were so good!).

When we got my title we didn't get the plates b/c he can't get plates w/o an Arizona address. So, that sucks, but my temporary plats last until January, so I didn't really need plates. It just would have been nice to have so the people I sell the car too don't see that I'm turning over a car I just got.

Then we killed some time at Starbucks and walking around a park after they closed (parks don't close at dusk, they close at 10 in Phoenix!). When we felt it was late enough we slept at our favorite RV park. Joe picked the same exact spot we stayed in last time, but almost simultaneously we decided to go somewhere else in case the regulars (which everyone here seemed to be) remembered us and reported to the manager that we were back.

Then the next morning, we again rush out dark and early and hit a park for some quality napping. After we get up, we eat a little cereal (we got 4 boxes... they were on sale! We spent $7 on 4 boxes of cereal and a quart of milk, and saved $13), and then its time for us to go our separate ways. I know what you're thinking, but we were doing so much better right? Yes, we were doing so much better, and yes, we were spending more time together than we needed to. Joe didn't have to stick around for me to get the title, and I didn't have to stick around for morning to drive the car. But, we still agreed that spending some time apart would be good for us, so we made an agreement to meet in LA in a week. We wanted to meet in Vegas, but Joe was going to hike into the Los Padres forest in California (he fell in love with this place when we visited Santa Barbra), and I was planning on touring New Mexico. Either I would have to drive to Vegas first, then backtrack to New Mexico, or he would have to drive to California, then backtrack to Vegas. So while we agreed it would suck to be in Vegas alone (national parks = nice to be alone, big party town = not so nice to be alone), but it was just too much time and or money to meet there the way our plans were going.

After breakfast Joe says he's off to the Sadona one last time to get in some quality hiking (we only got to go on one trail last time). I tell him its on my way too (I have to head north to go east... there are only so many roads out here), so we agree that we would try to meet up there. Joe took the GPS, and I used my map reading skills, and we eventually make it out of Phoenix. Joe left first, and then I realized that I didn't have the slightest clue where I was or how to get to the interstate. I dove to the nearest gas station, and as I'm about to ask for directions, Joe called. He was filling up down the street, and he realized I might need to fallow him until we hit the interstate, and he wanted to give me our national park pass since he would be going rugged off the radar, and I would be visiting several parks. Once we hit the interstate I was supposed to drive on ahead (I go about 15mph faster than he does), but I was on the phone with Laura, and I just mindlessly followed Joe as he got off the interstate and drove to his bank. He says I did it so I could see him again. I'm sticking with the reason its illegal in some states to drive while on a cell. By the way, what states are those? It wasn't an issue on the bike, but now that I have the car, I've been on the cell in every state I pass through. Humph.

Posted by - Rain 19:41

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Comments

i didn't know people still spoke Navajo, how cool is that? it's like that movie "True Whispers" about how the Navajo code talkers helped win WWII because no one could break the code of their language.

by georgi r

This is from some official site for highway safety:

Handheld Cell Phone Bans for All Drivers: 6 states (California, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, Oregon and Washington), the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands prohibit all drivers from talking on handheld cell phones while driving.
With the exception of Washington State, these laws are all primary enforcement—an officer may ticket a driver for using a handheld cell phone while driving without any other traffic offense taking place.
All Cell Phone Bans: No state completely bans all types of cell phone use (handheld and hands-free) for all drivers, but many prohibit cell phone use by certain segments of the population.
Novice Drivers: 21 states and the District of Columbia ban all cell use by novice drivers.
School Bus Drivers: In 17 states and the District of Columbia, school bus drivers are prohibited from all cell phone use when passengers are present.
Text Messaging: 19 states and the District of Columbia now ban text messaging for all drivers.
Novice Drivers: 9 states prohibit text messaging by novice drivers.
School Bus Drivers: 1 state restricts school bus drivers from texting while driving.
Preemption Laws: 6 states have laws that prohibit local jurisdictions from enacting restrictions. In other states, localities are allowed to ban cell phone use or texting while driving.
Some states, such as Maine, New Hampshire and Utah treat cell phone use as a larger distracted driving issue.
Utah considers speaking on a cellphone to be an offense only if a driver is also committing some other moving violation (other than speeding).

by Sheryl S

wow, sheryl, you are a font of information! i was going to call you a geek in another blog when you defined something about a rock formation - of course, meaning geek in the most loving and supportive of ways, - but now i must do it - geek!:)

by georgi r

vanessa, i usually just drop my phone to my lap when i pass a police car and pretend i am sneezing, so far so good. also, that is why i bought you a hands free set! (which i think danielle has and can't find the charger for)

by georgi r

I rarely pickup my phone while driving. I've had too many close calls due to not paying attention...and thats without talking on a cell phone :-) Its cool that their keeping their language alive and well. Having that be your only language sounds like a really restrictive life choice though.

by buddy-JC

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