We had a day off today, as the van will be in the shop until tomorrow. Since nothing important happened today, I’ll tell you about my special connection to Arizona.
When I was 17 years old, I ran away from home. (Everything is cool now. My relationship with my parents is amazing. They are both huge supporters and incredible people.) When I was 18, I took off across the country. I wanted to hit the road and experience life. My friend Ben and I traveled throughout the U.S. for months. We explored the East Coast, the South, and then we came to Arizona. My friend from high school, Mindi (Hi!), had moved out to Cottonwood, Arizona, a little town near Sedona. We decided to visit her while we were in the state. We ended up falling in love with the area.
We met, for lack of a better way to describe them, a bunch of traveling hippies. We set up camp in the National Forest, with all the other travelers. There were about 80 of us living in the desert. It could be likened to a hippie commune of sorts. I was drawn to the freedom, the community, the nature, and the adventure of it all. I had a lot of amazing experiences while living out there.
I returned to Massachusetts for a few months and then headed back to Arizona. This time I lived with my friend Mindi (Thank you Mindi!). I had some court fees to pay off (I used to be a pretty rowdy kid) and Mindi let me stay with her while I made some money. We explored the desert together and had a lot of fun. Eventually, I bought a jeep and drove back to Massachusetts.
A few months later, I met Potter and told him I was going back to Arizona. He wanted to come. We packed up the jeep and headed West. This was my third time living in the Sedona, Arizona area. We came back to Massachusetts about six months later and I hadn’t been back since.
I ended up living on the road for three years. I lived everywhere, from the city streets, to the woods of New England, from a coastal beach, to the deserts of the Southwest. I met people from all over the world living in the smallest towns and the biggest cities of the United States. It was quite an adventure.
The first time I came out here was nine years ago. The last time I was here was seven years ago. I have missed it. I have missed the desert, Sedona, Cottonwood, and Jerome. I love Jerome. That is why I decided to get my first tattoo in Jerome.
I promised I would tell you about my connection to Arizona. That is my story (at least the parts that I care to make public). Below are some pictures from the time that I was a traveling hippie on the road of peace, love, and freedom (or something like that). You can see more pictures here. You can also see pictures of Stage Stop, the place I used to live, here