Hollywood to Hesperia (94.8 miles)

Nice Avis lady: “I have some bad news. The car that we were going to give you just came in and it was just wrecked by the previous renter. It’s going to take us a while to clean it up.”

Me: “Ok.”

My internal voice: Thank you previous renter. I saw a sport car out there. Wait for it… wait for it…

Nice Avis lady: “But if it’s just you travelling and you’re willing, I can give you that little red car out there for the same price.”

The little red car she was referring to was a Mazda MX-5 Miata convertible. I noticed it on the way in and thought it was really cute. I had to play this cool.

Me: “Have you ever noticed if the fancy sport cars have a higher incidence of theft than the average grey/white rental?”

Nice Avis lady: “No. They’re all broken into equally.”

Me: “Then of course, why wouldn’t I take it?”

My extremely excited singing internal voice: I’m going on a roadtrip in a little red convertible! I’m going to zip around the Route 66 in a little red convertible! Hallelujah!

I think this car would be hard to rent out. It’s tiny and really only fits one small person who can fold themselves into the vehicle. The trunk only holds one carry-on sized suitcase and a large bottle of water. Also, it’s a manual… I think it’s called a manual… it’s not a standard with a foot clutch, but instead, you still have to shift through the gears without a clutch. Apparently this improves fuel efficiency… and for me increases the coolness factor.

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This was the beginning of the Great Arizona Road Trip Adventure: take Route 66 to Arizona, head south to Yuma and the Mexican border, and then drive through the desert and back to Los Angeles. The plan for the evening was to drive to Hesperia and stay for the evening. I didn’t fancy adding an extra few hours to my Friday by trying to leave L.A. on a Friday morning.

This first leg of the adventure involved me whipping through Hollywood with the top down in search of a Whole Foods so I could get snacks and water for the drive. I couldn’t help myself… when in Hollywood… be Californian: top down, sunglasses, flip flogs, daisy dukes, and a sweater. I will say, however, I am more SF than LA. I won’t honk or scream at people… it’s all about moving with the flow.

The second leg involved driving up the San Gabriel Mountains and through the Angeles National Forest. This is an absolutely beautiful drive, and peaceful too. While GPS was showing me accidents and traffic back-ups on Route 201, I was meandering through the mountains and saw very little traffic. Periodically I would stop to enjoy the complete silence of the mountains. I saw only one other person… and he was meditating at the top.

I reached the other side of the mountains just as the sun finished setting.

The route to Hesperia:

hollywood-to-hesperia

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