We arrived in Los Angeles yesterday! This is where our road trip started and now ended. What a perfect timing that today is the last day of 2017. We had some time to reflect on all the happenings this year on our way to LA and it is undoubtedly to say that this road trip is the first thing that comes to our mind.
We have a bunch of highlights about the trip and life living out of the minivan. We enjoy the good moments and all the smiles and joy that brought to us; but we also embrace the bad moments because they are memorable and make us appreciate the good.
(k) The moment when we bought our minivan from Craigslist for the trip. It coincidently happened on our anniversary too! We had decided that we are going on the trip, and the purchase of the minivan just made this road trip even more real.
(k) The moment when we saw the infinite mountain ranges after a difficult hike/scramble up to Mount Temple in Banff, Canada. (we agreed that it is the hardest one on the trip!) I personally did not make it to the top (Min did, however), but it was high enough that I could see the limitless snow-capped mountains that seem to go on forever. It felt like you are at the top of everything. The grand view just left me in awe and reminded me why I wanted to do this trip in the first place.
(m) The moments on the trip when we had good, serious conversations about anything like planning the trip, discussing the future, discerning family issues and etc. Growing up in an Asian culture, these conversations do not come by that often in both of our families, so they are also not natural for neither of us. This trip provided plenty of opportunities and space for us to make these conversations more intentional and come off more naturally. They not only improved the communication between us, but also allowed us to understand and know each other more and closer.
(k) The moment when we had to cook in the windy, freezing cold at Columbia Icefield in Jasper, Alberta, Canada. It was probably the coldest we’ve experienced on the trip. Temperature was at most in the low 20s F. We found a shelter to cook but it was not enclosed so the wind kept blowing into the shelter and made cooking harder than it should be. This is when I wish we could have an indoor kitchen.
(k) The moment after the sun has set and everything went dark at the Solar Slab in Red Rock Canyon, Nevada. We had to rappel down the rock in the dark, did a bunch of sketchy down climb because we could not find anchors anymore and also got lost on the hike out to the parking lot. It was 9:30 pm when we finally found our way back. Believe me, it was very frustrating and exhausting!
(k) The moment when we looked through our packs and realized that we did not bring the camping stove in a winter backpacking trip in Conundrum Hot Springs, Colorado. It was the saddest moment when you know that there is no hot food for the night but only nuts, jerky and banana. Oh, not to say it was also another cold night in the 20s F and we still had 8.5 miles to hike out the next day. I shut off my mind, went to bed right away, and only to hope sun would rise faster.
(m) The moment when our minivan broke down in Seattle, Washington. It was only about a month and a half into our trip. With our vehicle being out of commission, it placed our hopes and expectations of the trip in jeopardy. What if the mechanics tell us it is not repairable? What if the trip has to forced to an end?
We are entering year 2018 tomorrow. While I am sad and still am taking in the fact that our road trip has come to an end; adventures do not stop here. It may not be another month-long trip (i secretly hope that we can do something similar again though), but weekend travels are certainly happening! In the next few months, I am also looking forward to share pictures and write more about the places we had been to this year.
You who are young, be happy while you are young, and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth. Follow the ways of your heart and whatever your eyes see, but know that for all these things God will bring you into judgment. Ecclesiastes 11:9