The Last Word on The Word LAST

If I hear one more time… so that was not the LAST great road trip I’ll…

last [last, lahst]
adjective a superl. of late with later as compar.

  1. occurring or coming after all others, as in time, order, or place: the last line on a page.
  2. most recent; next before the present; latest: last week; last Friday.
  3. being the only one remaining: my last dollar; the last outpost; a last chance. final: in his last hours.
  4. ultimate or conclusive; definitive: the last word in the argument. That which is ultimate (literally, most remote) is the last that can be reached, as in progression or regression, experience, or a course of investigation: ultimate truths.

The idea of going on great off-road adventures came to me while sitting in the ferry line one dark and stormy northwest night as Jimmy buffet played in my head

Just a semi-normal person
Thought he had the future planned…
…Now he’s somewhere over China
Lookin’ down on all the trails
On the mountains lookin’ back at him
It’s a real live fairy tale
Put a little distance
Between causes and effects
Like a day old fortune cookie
Askin’ who or what comes next

For the next several weeks I could not shake the idea of driving on the ultimate (definition #4) off road adventure. Of course if you are going to measure an off-road adventure’s worthiness you need to have a yard stick to compare it against. A few historical adventurers immediately came to mind including:

  • Marco Polo’s spice run set the standard for great road trips
  • Sacagawea lead Lewis & Clark on a pretty good trip
  • The Oregon trail was another good off-road oriented adventure
  • Apollo 11 lead by Commander Neil Alden Armstrong was far out

That mental exercise set the bar pretty high and what came out was to drive to the ends of the earth. Deadhorse Alaska on the North End and the “Land of Fire”, Tierra del Fuego on the other.

Not having unlimited resources, super powers or any pull with small militant guerrilla groups the off-road adventure had to be planned in manageable chucks. The first chunk let us concur the northern portion driving up to the Arctic Ocean. In 2011 we completed our Baja off-road adventure following the most famous desert race course in the world the Baja 1000. In between a few off-road adventure trips though the Rubicon Trail and we even found time to explore the Utah backcountry discovery route.

I know we are not the first to make these treks. But we are making this our own by going out of our way to explore and celebrate the diverse cultures along the way. Each leg of our journey offers us a chance to make new friends, involve more readers, and learn how the differences between people can pull us together as we share tales of our lives. Of course we’ll write stories and post pictures the entire way, sharing the last great road trip with everyone and encouraging each to start their own adventure.

“What the hell did Marco Polo think
When he ran into the wall
Or the crazy Flying Tigers
Doin’ spins and loops and stalls
Just a taste for somethin’ different
Perking up a borin’ day
Now our man from Poulsbo
Feels exactly the same way…
…We’re all somewhere over China
Headin’ east or headin’ west
Takin’ time to live a little
Flyin’ so far from the nest
Just to put a little distance
Between causes and effects
Like an ancient fortune teller<
Knowin’ who and what comes next “

One thought on “The Last Word on The Word LAST”

  1. Oh man, nobody listens to Jimmy Buffet and decides to drive to Alaska. That’s just wrong.

    More important, I’m really worried about you and those gorillas. It’s the wacky banany that make them so militant – Peruvian Yellow is the street name. They can’t get the monkey off their backs.

    Spelling and puns asides, your trip(s) remind both pirates and project managers looking at forty (and fifty) that there are still treasures to plunder and we have not arrived too late.

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