Monday, June 23, 2008

Day 17. Phoenix to Flagstaff

Day 17.
Poor Paul has been plagued with a crick in his neck for the past few days. My compassion hasn’t been sufficient, but as luck would have it, Steven’s was. We began the day with prayer becoming the prayed for.

We thanked Patrick for his hospitality, then Steven took us to meet up with a bunch of the crew from last night, who’d decided against Vegas with us, but out of their compassionate hearts, had opted for taking us as far as Flagstaff.
The drive was spectacular. The desert scenery almost as much as leaving the 110 degree heat.

Flagstaff is almost 7000 feet up, so much cooler & the pub we went to brewed it’s own beer. Needless to say, fine beer, good burgers & fun company help a monk reach a peak of enlightenment without a great deal of effort.

We went to a mountaintop to celebrate.

Saying farewell to our new friends, we talked to some truck drivers at the truckstop.
Petra, a sweet, blond haired truckie was helpful with advise, but regrettably was going the wrong way & worked for a company which disallowed picking up hitchhikers. She gave us a good laugh though & raised our spirits so as to not be crushed by the small man who came out with bravado thinly covering his nervousness, & told us there was a street outside that we should use. Poor Paul took this gnat of a man to heart a little, but just as we started along that very street, a couple of locals in a pickup U-turned & asked us if we wanted some food. They said we looked interesting & wanted to talk. We’d just eaten, so didn’t want to take advantage of them, but spent a little time talking instead. They were only young & while Paul was initially concerned they were going to baseball bat us, they were decent guys who appreciated what it was we were doing enough to offer us money to help along the way. (We didn’t take that either though, coz it would’ve meant them going to an ATM &… I’m not sure why actually.)

We found the freeway entrance & discovered someone already hitching there. A good sign perhaps. We went further up the road & sat, wrote & talked on the phone, waiting for him to get a ride. Eventually Paul went & talked to him & he said he didn’t think our hitching would effect his, so that’s what we did.

However, a police officer came along & broke up the party. His claim was that someone had called in to say there was a man on the freeway on his knees in front of another man, dressed in monk robes. He didn’t want to check it out, but the short straw fell to him. I had to laugh out loud & thanked him for his humour.

Paul wasn’t as amused, but had the self discipline to keep quite until he left.
We were forced to pack it in at 8pm. The earliest so far, by hours. We walked to an area of trees and found a spot to contemplate the insult while we set up tent.

Once the offence began to wane, we cooked some soup & were sleeping by 9.


We are praying that QIK sponsors us!
. .