Day 51.

Day 51 - Austin, TX, to Albuquerque, NM

Run - None

From the eyes of Bailee.

We have six stops left on the road trip before we head back to Boulder: Albuquerque, Flagstaff, Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Las Vegas is just a rest day to break up the long drive between Flagstaff and Tahoe. Los Angeles is our unofficial end to the trip, where we can relax a little before returning home. We’ll probably head home early the morning of August 13th, so we have ten days left. It’s crazy to think that this trip will be over in just ten days. We spent two years planning, two months doing, and in ten days it will be over.

This trip has brought out the best and worst in the group. As you might expect from four kids trapped in a car together for two months, we can get on each others nerves. We spend almost every minute of the day together. We wake up together, eat breakfast together, drive in a car together, maybe get a minute away from each other to write/practice violin/do roadtrip work at our host’s, eat dinner together, and then go to sleep together. So it’s not a surprise that we step on each other’s toes. There have been days when I want to explode because everything one of the others does annoys me. We’ve experienced hanger and irritability due to having to sit in the car for hours without stretching our legs. But we’ve also learned how to keep things fun and give each other space when we need to.

There are days when I wish the trip was longer. Or not really longer because I’m ready to go home, but slower. I wish we had more time to enjoy our surroundings and explore the places we’re visiting. For example, yesterday in Austin, Texas, we ran on the Barton Creek Greenbelt trail. It was shocking to find such a long section of nature within such a big city. As we neared our turnaround point, the trail gave way to the city, revealing skyscrapers. I turned back a little earlier than the boys and stumbled across the Barton Springs, a natural cold springs, as I was looking for a bathroom before running back to the car. I saw a lady with a dog also looking at the “closed” sign in front of the bathroom and asked her if she thought it would take long. She told me sometimes it takes them more than hour to finish cleaning the bathroom, but that she had gone to the main spring building before and they’d let her in. They wouldn’t let her in with her dog, so I offered to hold her dog while she went. We took turns and then went our separate ways. But while I was walking around the building to the bathroom, I saw the springs. It reminded me a lot of Glenwood. The pool was long and the water looked incredibly clear and refreshing. Even though it wasn’t even eight in the morning, people were already soaking or swimming in the pool. When I got back to the car, I told everyone about my discovery. We found out that the springs was free before eight in the morning or after nine at night and planned on going later. Unfortunately, after an early morning, heavy barbecue, book shopping, and ice cream, we were all too exhausted. By three we’d returned to our host’s home, showered, and passed out to nap. When we finally regathered, we voted by acclamation to drop our plans of going out to swim late that night. The weather was pleasant, but not in that burn your skin off kind of way that makes cold pools feel refreshing rather than frigid. In addition, we were all so tired nine o’clock seemed too late to be going out again. This morning, we had to leave early for our long drive and didn’t have time to stop by the springs on our way out of town. This has been one of the most present themes of our trip, being surrounded by fun and exciting opportunities, yet too exhausted to do everything we want to.

I’m not sure if I’ll ever go back to visit a lot of these places ever again. It’s been incredible seeing how varied life is outside of the People’s Republic of Boulder, but some of the places we’ve visited I probably never would have gone to if it weren’t for this trip. (Although, to be fair some of the places have pleasantly surprised me with how much I enjoyed them and maybe I will consider going back to those places). It makes me that much sadder that we haven’t had the time to fully experience every place we’ve visited. But, if we went slower and took more time with the trip, I wouldn’t be back in Boulder in time for school and I miss my home. Plus, my parents got a new dog since I’ve been away and I can’t wait to meet him (and see the love of my life, Cody dog).  Overall, it’s been an amazing adventure but I’m excited that we’ll be done soon.

Facts/stats of the day: 

Miles driven: 701

Miles run: 10.5

Elevation gained (feet): 866

Distance we could see during rainstorm (meters): 5

Expected increase in Alzheimer's cases in NM by 2025: 43.2%