We are all living in surreal times in our own different ways. The meme I’ve seen that captures the sentiment best is “We are not all in the same boat but we are all in the same storm.”
And, of course, we entered the global storm while in the midst of our own personal one. We were decidedly behind the eight ball when the pandemic hit. Not starting from a place of strength made it all the harder to manage.
Now for better or worse, shutdowns are easing. Parks have reopened for the most part. So we trepidatiously left our Covid-19 safe house after eleven weeks, knowing the chaos isn’t over.
Our hosts are wonderful and we’re grateful for their generosity as we had to respond to rapidly changing events. It was time to move on and get back to what we set out to do, in spite of less than ideal conditions out in the world. But we’re in a better position now to manage our personal situation in the midst of the ongoing pandemic.
Ironically, we ended up back at Washoe Lake State Park as our first stop. That’s where we were when everything shut down. It was a deliberate choice to have a short trip—only 15 miles—to get back on our nomadic feet. We wanted to give ourselves the space to refresh our memories. The procedures and routines of life on the road in a trailer have languished while sitting still for nearly three months.
The exhilaration of going back to doing what we love took a few days to manifest. We needed decompression time first. There was a sort of shock to being on the road again. The landscape at Washoe Lake certainly fits the bill to ease weary souls, though. Mountain views, sand dunes and wild horses grazing in the in the distance, abundant bird life—that put us back in the frame of mind to embrace exploring again.
We also quickly realized what we needed most was a motorcycle ride. In our houseless situation, the Adventure Dog can’t be left behind while we go riding together. Plus we had to retrieve the bikes from storage. But with a dog-sitter reservation and some vehicle swapping efforts in the storage unit we were able to regain some of our previous life. It was glorious.
Inspiration often comes from unlikely sources. Sometimes is makes sense to take on a challenge to regain your mojo. Sometimes you have to not fight it.
My attempts to revive my photography fire by force or challenge have not panned out over the last few months. It took a nesting killdeer pair at our Washoe campsite to excite me once more.
With increasing mental bandwidth each day, I suddenly found myself pulling out my camera and tripod to try to capture their antics and sweetness. Right in the middle of happy hour, no less! I was excited to be shooting again — genuinely thrilled and giddy. It felt tremendous.
I took delight in watching the birds tend to their eggs and do their fake injury stunt to lure people away who inadvertently (or willfully cluelessly) got too close. It became the talk of the day as we peered out at them through the trailer windows to check on them constantly.
We never did get to see the eggs hatch before we had maxed out the seven-day stay limit at the park. No matter. They gave me a gift they’ll never realize. That encounter and excitement led me to dip my toe back into time lapse photography for the first time in well over two years as we moved on to Wild Horse Reservoir State Recreation Area. Boy I’m rusty but happy to be refreshing those skills as well.
Time will tell
We’ll see how things play out for us on the road as the Coronavirus runs amok. But we’re in so much better shape to respond thoughtfully rather than react constantly. That’s a big difference this time around.
And to be sure, this year will certainly stand out in the history books for all of us as individuals and as a global community. And it’s only half over.
Adventure on, friends!