Westbound Days 1 & 2 – 334 miles – Concord to Cape Cod to Concord

Sunday, 19 June 1994

Part 1 of our Cadillac coast-to-coast Odyssey carried us from San Francisco via Death Valley, Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, Flagstaff, Phoenix, Tucson, El Paso, Amarillo, Little Rock, Memphis, Nashville, Philadelphia and finally ended up at Concord, just outside Boston, where we left our finned behemoth in the driveway of our friend and Lonely Planet author Tom Brosnahan. Maureen and our two children, Tashi and Kieran, then flew back home to Australia while I continued eastwards across the Atlantic to England. I spent the next six weeks working on our forthcoming Britain guidebook. During that stay I walked right across England, following Hadrian’s Wall.With sidetrips I covered about 100 miles in six days, it takes less time to walk across England than to drive across America! Three weeks in Australia followed during which I contrived to have a bicycle accident good enough for a bad case of road rash and some stitches in my eyebrow.

Trip two started with one big difference: one less child. Tashi, our daughter, decided to go on a school trip to Malaysia (remember South-East Asia is next door to Australia). Thirteen years old and already they’re abandoning us! So on Friday 17 June we flew out of Melbourne, crossed the Pacific, the equator, the International Dateline and from winter to summer and arrived in Los Angeles before we had left Australia. Late that evening we turned up in Concord, glanced at the Caddy beside the house and tumbled into bed.

Cape Cod whale watchingThe Caddy hadn’t just sat there for two months. Tom had got the air-conditioning fixed and a few less important problems attended to. So Saturday morning we started the San Francisco return trip by heading not west but east.


We drove out to Cape Cod to stay with two more Lonely Planet authors, Glenda Bendure and Ned Friary. That evening Kieran and I took a glider flight over the cape and next morning we drove right out to Provincetown, right at the end of the cape. Now we were as far east as we would drive but a whale watching trip carried us even further east, out into the Atlantic in search of whales. We found a couple of humpbacks, a real thrill and then turned westwards to start a trip which we hope will carry us all the way back to San Francisco. Sunday night we were back in Concord, almost de-jet lagged and ready to start part 2 of our ancient Cadillac expedition.