Free Spirit

After our harrowing drive to Peoria, we pulled into Wal-Mart and parked behind a well-traveled Holiday Rambler fifth-wheel. The next morning we were puttering around and passed our fellow traveler in the store. We were getting ready to leave when Ben noticed she was working on her rig, so he stopped over to see what was going on. He came back for his toolbox, and a couple minutes later I joined them. They were repairing the emergency braking system on the trailer.

Mia Torres is a carpenter and a travler. She’s crisscrossed the country many times. Raised in California, she lived for a while in NYC, and is presently on the way to Portland OR. She has done everything from framing to stage carpentry. When we met Mia she was on her way to Portland to start a business building–can you guess? Tiny houses. She joked that she was named after Mia Farrow, and the name is where the resemblance stops. A strong, confident woman with a big warm smile. I liked her immediately.

Mia in front of her trailer. She definitely is a Free Spirit!
Mia with her trailer. She definitely is a Free Spirit!
Ben could have a second career in roadside assistance.
Ben could have a second career in roadside assistance.
Mia’s company is to be titled Big Little Builders; she’s in the process of building a website. I told her that I expected to see her on an episode of Tiny Homes one of these days. With her braking system in order, we parted ways as we both had places to go. As I write this, she is just ahead of us on the highway. She’s a speedy driver and is quickly disappearing from view.
I love people and learning about them, but I’m a bit of an introvert; I generally don’t make the first approach, and even if I do it takes me a while to warm up.  Ben is a polar opposite. Gregarious and unafraid, he marches right up to people and says howdy; in five minutes they are under his spell. By the time I show up, the ice is broken. He enriches my experience. Here are a few more scenes from the day.
I haven't seen all the truck stops in America, but this one was pretty darned big.
I haven’t seen all the truck stops in America, but this one was pretty darned big.
There were three trucks carrying these wondmill blades out of Van Wert OH to Wyoming. One blade is 190 feet long! There were 19 vehicles in the convoy.
There were three trucks carrying windmill blades out of Van Wert OH to Wyoming. Each blade is 190 feet long.  With the trucks and all the escort cars, here were 19 vehicles in the convoy. Ben pulled the RV in front for comparison.
Ben met one of the escort drivers. The day before we met him he was rammed from behind by a woman who was texting on the highway.
Ben met one of the escort drivers. The day before we met him he was rammed from behind by a woman who was texting on the highway.
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2 thoughts on “Free Spirit

  1. Pam, Enjoying the blog! Don’t know if you and Ben travel on I 20 or not. If you do the first exit into New Mexico head west there is a truck stop. Its Russell’s truck stop. They have a museum with cars and all kinds of things. If you are going that way it is worth the stop. Best of all its FREE! Safe travels…hope to see you on the road some day….Dan & Mary Beth

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