Please enjoy the original writing, Christian travel journal, and photography by a hapa haole named Gail Rhea.

Original Writing & Photography

by Gail Rhea




From: "The Hapa Haole Journal"

Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2006 9:45 PM CDT

Subject: The HHJ: Road Trip 2006


I've made my lists.

I'm checking them twice.

I'm not looking for who's been naughty or nice.

Because it's not Christmas in August, just preparation for my first road trip since 1999. This time, I'm headed up to western Idaho right next to the stateline where my grandparents used to farm. The man who is now farming the ground where their house once stood is planning to demolish the old bunkhouse and shed and I want to get a good look at them while they're still standing.

You know how one thing leads to another? Well...

As long as I'll already be in the area, I might do some research in various county seats in eastern and central Washington.

As long as I'll already be way up there in Washington, I may as well buzz over to visit a friend who lives near Bellingham.

As long as I'll already be so close to Vancouver...

As long as I'll already be on the West Coast...

You see how it goes?

It all started when I was playing around in Microsoft Streets & Trips and saw it routing me past Pikes Peak and the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado and right through Yellowstone in Wyoming.

Who am I to refuse God's gift of natural splendor?

With a bit of tweaking, I altered the route so I enter Yellowstone through the Grand Teton National Park. Rather than coming straight back, and to avoid the possibility of early snow in the high Rockies, I'd love to return by driving next to the Pacific Ocean following the West Coast down to San Diego then over to Death Valley and the Grand Canyon.

This grandiose plan is a bit unsettling in that I'm not used to having the freedom to wander as I will. This is the first road trip I've ever experienced that isn't constrained by having to get back to the office on time. I won't leave until after my dental appointment (teeth cleaning) on Aug. 22, but I already feel as though I'm free-falling through time, exhilarated, yet not knowing how long it will take for my parachute open and float me to a safe stop. Money is a constraint, of course, but camping will make it go much farther.

I firmly believe that good things come to s/he who waits and this adventure has the potential of fulfilling one of the dreams I've held since I was a teen.

I hope you'll enjoy this segment of The Hapa Haole Journal and request that you pray for me as well as those whom I may encounter along the way ;).








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