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A Definite Event

An excerpt from the journal of my 1996 cycle across America.

A serious roly-poly road. Fabulous scenery.

It was at times white gravel, pure white. Other times it was red, other times it was orange, other times it was brown sand. There were lots of yuccas, lots of other plants. I finally got to see my first saguaro, the big cactus, the big huge one.

I saw one this morning, then I saw 2 of them together, and finally I saw not far off a forest of them up the slope of this mountain which was squared off like a table - the top, like a perfect ridge around the top of it and then it was flat. You get a lot of those kind of shaped mountains around here, mesas. But as well as seeing a mountain like that, beside it you’ll see 3 mountains which are all pure rock, grey, whereas that mesa might’ve been deep red, and they’ll be pyramid shaped coming right up to a peak. And also in the same range you’ve got perfectly rounded ones.

But to see those cacti, loads of them, on the slope of a barren mountain, there’s quite a presence about them, it’s almost like they’re crosses or something, like a graveyard. To me, the first day seeing them, it’s an event, it’s like crossing the Mississippi. Even though I’ve been in desert for hundreds of miles and I’ve seen tens of thousands of other cacti, this is a definite event.

This excerpt is from Part 72 - Reservation which I posted today on IrishKC where I’ve posted all the parts of the journal of my cycle across America.

There’s been a huge delay in continuing the series of posts because I stalled when I discovered a taped section of the journal yet to be transcribed. Future excerpts are all now typed up ready to post and should be a lot easier to read than this taped entry as they were originally handwritten.


  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Eolaí gan Fhéile. Eolaí gan Fhéile said: Cycle Across America : A Definite Event - excerpt (of Part 72) of journal [...]

  2. [...] Travel Posts:    • Angkor Wat, Cambodia    • A Definite Event    • Graffiti, Genoa, Italy    • Loads of Photos Tags: [...]

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