Adventures with Javier


A lot of the time on this trip Emma is the chief Navigator. But sometimes Emma takes a nap and lets Javier, our Spanish-speaking, slightly scatterbrained GPS take charge of the navigational guidance.

When we are in a big city with lots of freeways and on-ramps and off-ramps and seriously confusing spaghetti junctions, this can be a good thing. 

That way if things go wrong, Javier gets the blame.

Sometimes Javier can find a way through where the maps are vague regarding the location of the back roads. 

Sometimes we find ourselves in abandoned towns and farms that no longer make the map.

Sometimes however, we end up somewhere that maybe none of us intended, not even Javier.

One such occasion was when, in Nevada, we decided we wanted to explore the abandoned mill and ghost towns in a section of the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest.

We had decided it would be fun to head south again, but the map showed no through roads in the National Forest. Never mind, we’ll just ask Javier. Ask him we did, he came up with a plan, proving himself to be a much more worthwhile navigator than Emma who was merely using a badly drawn map she had located online to find the abandoned Belmont Mill. 

We temporarily ignored Javier’s plaintive yammering to take a side trip to the aforementioned mill. He wasn’t impressed, shouting things like ‘Cuando pueda haga un cambio de sentido’ (Which by the way, is what Javier says when he is really mad.)

As a bonus as we arrived at the mill he came up with a ‘Plan B’ and picked a different, more elaborate sounding plan to take us through the backwoods of Nevada—excellent!

See also  Finally—Heading south like we're supposed to!

As we started journey the road seemed reasonable.

Reasonable road

Then it seemed slightly more sketchy…

Slightly more sketchy

Then slightly more sketchy…

Slightly more sketchy
Slightly more sketchy
Ben gets a little sideways in our house
Ben gets a little sideways in our house

Then genuinely concerning…

Slightly more sketchy
From here it only gets narrower…

Finally, only a couple of kilometres from what looked to be a far more sensible road we had to admit defeat.

Probably can't drive our house through here
Probably can’t drive our house through here… maybe we should have travelled by motorbike?

Sorry Javier, try again!

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