He was twenty-four, footloose and free.
Yet not unhappy.
It was the winter of 1972.
Beautiful Boulder, Colorado was blanketed with snow and ice.
But he had to escape this season of the freezer.
He headed south.
He didn't return to Colorado until the next Spring.
After warming up in Florida, he headed back to Colorado.
He had never tried hitchiking.
He spent a long time waiting for rides.
His first rides were as different as day and night.
One was from a young man who kept asking if he was a Christian, and if he had been saved.
The young man kept accelerating when no answer was given.
It started to feel like a ride to hell.
He wanted to get out.
The young man finally slowed down.
He got out.
He must have said, “Yes, I've been saved! I've accepted Jesus into my life! Praise the Lord!”
The other ride was from an old timer.
The old timer gave him his lunch, then said “Good luck” and “Goodbye”.
It was an apple and some kind of sandwich.
A large cockroach was walking across the cement floor in a filling station.
The filling station guy STOMPED the cockroach as he was giving directions.
He spent all day on the interstate.
It was already night.
A car stopped.
He walked up and tapped the window.
Inside a man was looking at a map.
He jumped when the window was tapped.
He rolled down the window, and said in an English accent, “Yes?”
“Can you give me a ride?”
The man hesitated, then opened the door.
The driver said that he rarely picked up hitchikers.
He asked if it was ok if he drove fast.
He worked for People magazine, and he was in a hurry.
Lordsburg, New Mexico.
It began to rain, so he crawled beneath one of the parked container trucks.
When the rain stopped he waited for big trucks to stop.
After a short time, a North American driver said to hop in, and that he was headed for Tuscon.
The driver offered him money, but he said, “No. Thanks for the ride.”
He had a dollar and seventeen cents.
He walked into the cafeteria on the University of Arizona campus, and ordered a cup of coffee and toast.
The toast was cold and soggy, so he went to get a replacement.
One dollar and seventeen cents.
Coffee and toast.
Somehow he bumped into the same guy who had once “crashed” in his apartment in Colorado.
He was a son of the vice-president of Johnson & Johnson.
His nickname was Road.
Road loaned him ten dollars, and let him sleep on the roof of his apartment building.
While in Tuscon, and before heading back to Colorado, he met students, poets, potheads, and Satanists.
And he decided that he never wanted to hitchike again.
IT'S ABOUT RENEWABLE RESOURCES!