As you know, Miss Hilda is my 1966 VW Bug.....I’m just the driver.
Yes, we're driving cross-country! As the Simon and Garfunkel song says ---- we've gone to look for America. And it's all about the road less taken.
Where is Miss Hilda today?
WE MADE IT!!!! AFTER 4,500 MILES MISS HILDA ARRIVED IN SANTA BARBARA!
The Little Bug that Could!!
From Lancaster County, PA to Santa Barbara, CA.
NO seatbelts, air-conditioning, radio, power brakes, airbags...and an air cooled engine that ran on a 6 Volt battery with maximum power of 50hp! Wow!
Here's the video from our first day on the road - and the video from our last day, as we reach Santa Barbara, five weeks later:
Video of Day 27 - Final Day of our Cross-Country Tour:
A few weeks ago we were in Eldon, Iowa at the iconic house featured in American Gothic. And, as you can see, we've created a NEW American Gothic.
Summary of Miss Hilda's last day on the road:
Starting out in early morning, we began crossing the California section of the Mojave Desert. And what an exotic and evocative name: Mojave. Named for the Mohave tribe of Native Americans, this vast and stark desert covers well over 22,000 sq miles.
Yes, the Mojave has the raw, unique and serene beauty that its name conjures. Canyons, painted rocks, bordering mountian ranges, etc. You'll want to have your camera ready at all times. But, because I was driving Miss Hilda, a 1966 VW Bug, we were most affected by the unrelenting and whistling wind! Wow!
We were getting battered and pushed around by the Majove wind, so we had to putt-putt across this desert with the windows CLOSED. Yep, you guessed it: no air conditioning. Not ideal. Miss Hilda quickly became my personal, rolling sweat lodge. But I was encouraged to see several large wind farms taking advantage of this incredible natural resource!
After a few intensely close calls with overly aggressive traffic on two California freeways -- what was I thinking?? -- Miss Hilda arrived in sunbathed and palm-lined Santa Barbara!
Surely, Santa Barbara is the Land of Oz for vintage VW Bugs. You see them all the time - still loved and running.
It was a bit hard to believe we'd arrived at our final destination. We'd travelled over 4,500 miles to explore the natural wonders, local museums, history, regional traditions, eccentric characters and unique culinary tastes throughout this great country of ours. We'd explored the rich texture of our American roots - and got a brief glimpse of the future of this great country.
I'd driven Miss Hilda through snowstorms in numbing cold, thunderstorms, sleetstorms, blazing dessert heat, never-ending midwest wheat fields and up 10,000 ft mountains. Which we very slowly descended.
And now we'd reached our final destination. But Miss Hilda never let us down. She always started quickly and ran true. Incredible.
I couldn't have done it without Bob's constant support during the trip. He became the official navigator & photographer and his help was crucial. And thank you, dear family and friends for your love & support. You all were with me on this trip!
My final perspective: as Mr. Guthrie says, "This land is YOUR land, this land is my land." Now get out there and see it!
Click on the "Day 27" button, on the left, for a full blog (You can view ALL of our trip blogs and videos, by clicking on the trip date buttons on the left side of this page. Enjoy!)
NOTES FROM OUR FIRST DAY ON THE ROAD:
From Lancaster County, PA to Santa Barbara, CA. A great American road trip. Crazy, I know, but it’s been my dream. We're proudly letting our inner Freak Flag Fly!
Miss Hilda’s cross-country trip would be nearly impossible without my beautiful husband, Bob, as our Official Road Crew!
Bob will drive behind us, in his trusty van, to keep us in his sights. He definitely has our back – and a hitch on his van, just in case Miss Hilda needs a tow. (Hope not!)
I know it’ll be tough. Miss Hilda doesn't have seatbelts, air-conditioning, a radio, power brakes, airbags, etc. And don't forget that Miss Hilda runs on an air-cooled engine. But every journey has its challenges!
Photo of Annette and me in Miss Hilda:
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We’re going to take a slow ride across the USA to explore, learn and just experience. Beautiful.
Thanks for your love and support!!!!!!!!!!
"DON'T BE DENIED" - Neil Young
"Afoot and light-hearted I take to the open road,
Healthy, free, the world before me,
The long brown path before me leading wherever I choose."