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The first leg of the Great Move of 2013 is behind me. Yesterday, the U-Haul was packed, my car loaded up onto the back and my trusty co-pilot, Will, and I trucked westward.

Learning to drive this rig is proving difficult, so I’m that guy everyone hates, going twenty miles (or more) under the speed limit in the right lane, jamming the gas pedal because there is no cruise control. Semis whiz by, but I’d prefer to take things slowly and safely. The combined length of the truck and the auto trailer is more than 30 feet, so I think I can be forgiven.

Despite the truck’s best attempts to overheat, we made it into Las Vegas, where my family lives. It is a paradise where the A/C is blasting, the couches are soft and the food is free and plentiful. It is safe here; familiar.

Everything beyond this point is uncharted territory. I imagine this is how the early explorers felt when they were about to leave their home port for strange seas. For those mariners, the sea over the horizon held unknown dangers. Perhaps the world was flat and they might fall of the edge. Perhaps dragons or krakens or other beasts lay in wait.

Or maybe it’s more accurate to compare us to the Saharan traders. We are in the desert, after all, and there is a camel on the side of the U-Haul. Here is a friendly, safe place to shelter for the night and recoup our strength. But like those merchants, we cannot stay here forever. We must face the unknown.

278 miles down. 1,123 miles to go. Next stop, Reno.

— 30 —

Jonny Eberle is a nomadic writer in the midst of moving to Tacoma, WA from Flagstaff, AZ. You can follow the expedition here and on Twitter. Thanks for reading!

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