Saturday, August 4, 2012

Fruita Cake

August 4

Before dawn Amy, Colin, and I left the not so super 8 and began singing Willie Nelson.  I know we all want to move past this seemingly endless delay in western Colorado and meet new Mormon friends and even some godless apostates in Utah. I feel I would be remiss, however, if I did not say a few words about Fruita, my prison for the last forty eight hours.
An entrepreneur named who the hell cares came to the Grand Valley in the 1880s with dreams of creating an empire of apple and pear orchards.  The soil was willing, with a little help from irrigation projects, but an insect invasion attacked the fruit buffet like a starved Sumo wrestler leading to calamity, disaster, and other bad stuff.
The town shook off the setback and survived to the present day. Tourism is now a thriving industry in Fruita.  Huge dinosaurs such as brachiosaurus, supersaurus, and Ultrasaurus (I promise I did not make those names up) were all found nearby, as well as raptors, the tiny yet savage killers from "Jurassic Park.".
For those uninterested in dusty old fossils, Rimrock Adventures provides guides for a variety of outdoor activities.  An extensive series of bike trails also draws visitors.
Sadly if predictably I have missed the town's main event.  Every May Fruita celebrates the life and times of Mike the Headless Chicken.   Mike was beheaded in 1935, but refused to let that handicap keep him down.  His brain stem continued to function for eighteen months, during which he was featured in "Life" magazine and toured the world before crossing the road eternal.

Now back to our regularly scheduled walk.  Colin and mom took turns accompanying me during the day.  Each shift was two hours in length.  The most noteworthy was the fourth rotation, which carried mom and I across the Utah border. The values placed upon road M 8-10 by Colorado and her neighbor were readily apparent.  The freshly painted yellow lines disappeared immediately and so did most of the pavement.  I can't fault Utah's budgetary priorities too much considering we had seen all of five cars in the previous two hours.
This next hundred miles or so are pretty much bereft of any human dwellings whatsoever.  I hope you liked learning about Fruita because talk of civilization will be lacking in the coming days.  The words sparse, barren, and empty should dominate the discussion.  If you have any suggestions for good synonyms send them along.

22 miles/

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