Over the last few weeks, Logan and I have been traveling all over Northern California. We went to Chico to see family, to Sebastopol for my first author event and to Novato to meet the folks who published my book at New World Library. In-between all of the travel, I’ve been working on my new class and trying not to stress out. I discovered long ago that I am a creature of habit, so lots of travel makes me a little anxious.
To give you an idea of where we’ve been, here’s a quick run down of our itinerary . . .
- September 4: Moved the tiny house to the ranch.
- September 4 — 11: Put the house together, visited with family, and helped prepare for Pat and Blair’s party.
- September 11 — 14: Left the ranch and headed to Chico to visit family.
- September 14 — 17: Came back to the ranch for a weekend at home.
- September 18 — onward: Book launch day + blog tour + author events!
- September 17 — 20: Left the ranch and drove back to Chico, picked up a rental car then headed to Sebastopol for an author event, then to Novato, and back to Chico again. Dropped off a rental car, in Chico, and picked up a new one for a one way trip back home.
- September 21: Returned the rental car to Yreka.
- September 22: Yreka author event.
Luckily, Tyler (my amazing brother in-law) loaned us his car for some of our travel and in-between we rented two cars in Chico. Yreka is the closet “big town” to the ranch and they only have one car rental option. Since they have a monopoly on rental cars, Yreka prices are double when compared to Chico. Traveling by train and bus would have been ideal, but the logistics didn’t work out because of my tight schedule, radio interviews, and other family obligations.
I’m grateful that we were able to travel and rent cars over the last few weeks, but I’m happy to be out of the car and on my bike again. For example, on Saturday we cycled from the ranch into Yreka for an author event and then home again. It was a 25 mile, round-trip, bike ride and it was lovely. My knee acted up a little bit, but it was worth it. It felt so good to move my body because it hurt after spending so much time in the car.
Over the last two weeks, I learned a lot about myself and I loved spending so much time with Logan too. I’m happy that he’s taking a sabbatical from the work world. I couldn’t imagine going to author events without him.
And speaking of things I learned over the last few weeks, below are three tips I took away from two weeks of travel:
1. Scheduling interviews on travel days is a bad idea.
I had to reschedule a Skype interview with the lovely Caroline, from A Wish Come Clear, because I was stuck in traffic last week. Also, we had planned on taking the bus back home but I forgot about an early morning radio interview that I’d committed too. I didn't miss the interview, but it was a close call. Ever since, I've been triple checking my calendar.
2. Plan ahead.
This is a really simple piece of advice, but it’s so important. Neglecting to look at my calendar made the return trip more stressful and expensive because we couldn’t take the bus home. Instead, we rented a car.
3. Double your travel time & cost.
Traveling by car always takes longer than I expect. Usually, there is traffic or construction to deal with and the costs are always more than I expect! Since I cycle so much, I forget about the expensive gas prices.
Parting words . . .
I don’t know what the future holds, but right now I’m happy to be back at home. Luckily my next author event is close by in Ashland, on Thursday evening. Ashland is only a 45-minute drive from the ranch and we’re going to car pool with my mother in-law. It should be really fun.
A lot of people have asked where we’re going next. I don’t have the answer to that question. For now, we’re planning on staying at the ranch. Logan and I are loving it here, despite the transportation challenges. There is so much to look forward to over the next few months, including a few more author events, my upcoming writing class and lots of cycling too.