On March 1st, 2010, my friend Walter and I set off on an adventure with my Arabian horse, Sojourner. I rode Soj across America and Walter drove our little truck (with no trailer). The trip began in Los Angeles, California and successfully ended in Bath, New Hampshire 8 months and 14 days later. It was a 3,700 mile ride.

We rode in celebration of family and as an outreach to those dealing with divorce-related depression.

This ride tells a tale of love in many forms - through the people we meet along the way, our connection with the horse, with the land, and with each other.

As this blog goes on it gets more and more in depth with tons of photos and experiences. Snuggle in with a cup of tea and read this like a book. I have switched the blog around so it reads start to finish so you don't have to read backward (except the first entry).

Here is our story...

Eastern time zone!


Walter and I took Joe's suggestion and hopped on Joe and Marybell's bikes to take a little ride down to the Ohio River. It was such a wonderful thing to do. You just can't go a whole summer without getting on the back of a bike!

Dennis the Menace. He went through the sprinkler, of course.

The sun was setting and the air was perfect. Joe and his daughter tacked up their horses and rode down to meet us. Bikes and horses in the summer by a river. Perfect.

The next morning Joe and I tacked up and headed out around 10am or so. I thought it was going to be cooler so we left later, but it was actually a pretty hot day. The breeze helped a lot though. Joe rode out with me on his beautiful Tennessee Walker for about 8 miles until Marybell came to pick him up.

We spent the entire day on Highway 60. It's not a bad highway to be on now because the shoulders have gotten wider, but it's not great riding because it is so loud! I am thinking we might have to be on highways a little more now that we are out of the West. The West just has so much open land and tons of options to get off the main drag onto a county road.

Sojourner and Yota (the truck) took us to our next stop in Cloverport, Kentucky. We met Mark and Tonya Roach and most of their children. Mark and Tonya have a beautiful plot of land. Their son lives with his wife just on the other side of the field in the old house that Mark grew up in.

I rode one of the mules led by Mark. Mark and Tonya's youngest son, Cody, took Walter with some feed for Soj over on the 4-wheeler.

I loved the morning at the Roach's place. At 5am they are all up having a cup of coffee. The sun rises over the field by the oldest sons house creating an incredible light. All of the sons zipped around getting their trucks out with a cup of coffee in their hand. The youngest son sat at the kitchen table eating a bowl of cereal. Their daughter was up already as well checking out things on the computer.

Most of the kids were in their mid to upper 20's but they were all still there, saying good morning to mom and dad. I told Tonya that my biggest dream is to have a big plot of land that my whole family could live on. I mean, who else would you want closest to you? I never could understand why we all move so far away from one another.

Mark laughed and said they tease each other that they take too good-a care of them so they keep coming back, but really, he says, he likes it as much as anyone.

Mark and a couple of his sons checking out the route with Walter

Sojourner had a nice 5 acre field to run around and in and run he did! Soj has a thing for donkeys and mules and his corral was right up against the mule corral. He ran up and down and up and down whinnying his little head off. Then he would let out a loud snort as if he had just won a heated debate.

Maybe it's the iron, maybe it was the cool morning, but Soj had far more energy yesterday as he took me 30 miles from Cloverport to Irvington. We made great time staying at about 5 miles per hour for the first four hours. Then we slowed a bit to four miles an hour.

Mark and Tonya's dog, Buddy, followed us for a while so Walter had to bring him back in the truck. Look at his little paw, the cutie...

We were finished with the 30 miles day by 2:30pm which is pretty good for us. Soj is now settled into another great big field at the Robinson's Farm.

We are also staying with the Robinsons on their estate across the street. It's a pretty magnificent place. They built their home up on top of the hill at the end of a long tree-lined driveway. It overlooks the barn (I can watch Soj from the window) and in the back is just open country and farms. Larry and his wife are retired now, but Larry used to be in the cattle business. The barn Soj is in now was once full of show cattle.

The barn from the window. Larry designed it with red siding and a green roof after one of the big race barns in Lexington. Kentucky is known for its red barns and white picket fences.

Last night Larry and Vicki took us to the weekly Thursday night community dinner. It was a wonderful Thanksgiving sort of dinner. We met the Mayor and Judge and tons of different towns people. I told Walter about the turkey supper our community in NH used to have around the holidays. When I was in High School I would sometimes serve at it.

Walter had a little game of camera tag after dinner...

Walter and I now have to head out for a little drive to pick up Soj's Omegatin and Max-E-Glo. Tomorrow we have a 27 mile ride and we have the option of either camping in a baseball field or going a little further to a campground. It's Labor Day weekend though, so the campground might be really busy. We will probably spend tomorrow night in the baseball field...

By the way...we are now in the Eastern time zone!!!!


  1. Hey guys, just to rub it in a little. Today the high was 74, 30% humidity, sunny with a light north breeze. Am low for cast 38-40!!!! You shoulda come through the panhandle in the fall. Well, next time...
    Doc and Roberta

  2. Cute lawn furniture! You'll have cooler weather now! It's downright blustery here in Michigan. Fall....is.....here!

  3. Hi Linny,
    My immediate impression when seeing the first picture posted was: "That little girl must be just what Linny looked liked when she was younger." Upon closer inspection, I realized that the little cutie in the mini furniture was actually you. All grown up, sorta. (Like I have any room to talk about size.... all 5"1" if I stand up really straight and that's probably stretching it.)
    I've barely had a moment to savor your blog and I've been rather testy about it. Just spent the last hour or so reading some of your entries and now I can go to bed with the knowledge that you continue to be supported and nurtured by the multitudes. It is a little unreal when the reality of the distance traveled is contemplated. I just keep shaking my head and smiling at your accomplishments.
    After many tests and doctor appointments, it appears that Chris has malaria, which he assumes he picked up while in Viet Nam. He has spent the last 8 months rather ill and is as skinny as a pencil.... he now has to wait for another attack so the type of malaria can be determined and the appropriate medication given. The positive side is that his anxiety is lessened considerably, just knowing what is wrong. He is now a little more content staying home and letting Mom take care of him. I'll fatten him up in time to come out to N.H. for the celebration. Our latest plan is to fly out, rent a motorhome and then come out to the house. We'll bring our own B&B and park in the driveway. I get all bubbly inside, just thinking about seeing you and Cait. You're going to be home before you know it.

    Lots of love to you


  4. Nancy,
    So glad that you guys found out what is making Chris sick, so he can be treated. Still must be very hard on him he is such an active person, so being laid up a bit is probably hard for him.
    I am sure you will get him nursed back into adventure shape.Maybe you guys can do some white mountain hiking!!! Take care Wendy

  5. Oh Nancy!! Poor Chrissy! I'll write to him soon. I wish I could be there with you guys so you could fatten me up! Mmm mmm mmm. Chris and I had a whole conversation once about your cooking. Once or twice or three times even. :)

    I clapped my hands and said to Walter than I am so excited that you guys are coming in your mobile B&B. Oh, let's just sit and talk and sip tea and get some rocking chairs. We don't have any. My mama and I will have to buy a few rocking chairs. I can't wait.

  6. Nancy,
    I'm sorry your son has been so ill. If I was sick, I'd want to be with someone just like you, though. Actually, that would definitey be my wife. Her nurturing/caring instincts go into hyper-overdrive anytime something is wrong with me. It's very sweet. :)

    I'm so looking forward to meeting you in NH. I'm planning to camp and do some hiking in the White Mountains.

  7. Just a thought. I remember Nancy suggesting this back in OK, actually.

    If the threat of cold weather, missing family, finances, etc., is weighing heavily at this point in the journey, you could bee line it straight to the Atlantic in VA. Dip your toes in and then take a leisurely week or two relying on host families with horse trailers to hop scotch the three of you to about 50 miles from home.

    Absolutely Coast to Coast, and a good chapter in the book about the importance of being flexible and creative in pursuing one's dreams.

    Ride On!