We’re here! We rolled into SoCal around 1 PM and I think everyone was ready to get out of the car. After some 32 hours of driving cross-country, we are just about through with long distance driving. We’re not into the house just yet–the truck will be delivered on Monday, but we’re close.

The drive out of Vegas was pretty much what I remembered. Once you leave the city, you’re pretty much in desolate wasteland. Except of course, where they decided to build a casino–in the middle of the desert. Only in Nevada…

What do you expect in the middle of the desert? A casino and theme park, of course! What do you expect in the middle of the desert?A casino and theme park, of course!One thing I will say we were disappointed with is that there was no welcome to California sign as we drove into the state. Not a one. The best we could come up with was a California “Click it or Ticket” sign. Lame.

What, no sign? What, no sign?One thing I had forgotten about is just how expansive and desolate eastern CA is. It’s really all about wide open spaces out there. There is a rugged beauty to the terrain. I’m not sure I’d want to live there, but I would love to photograph it at sunset (sunrise is just too early…).

Not a lot to distract you out here. Not a lot to distract you out here.Thankfully, it wasn’t that hot in the desert. I’ve been across there when it’s over 100, and the A/C has a hard time keeping up. In the middle of the Mohave, it was only 84, and there was nice breeze. It was quite comfortable when we stopped at a rest stop.

Finally, we made it over to where we’re staying (Lake Forest). I was thankful we were heading west on the 91, as eastbound traffic was a mess. Once we hit the 241, it was smooth (if not expensive–it’s a toll road) sailing. The costal mountains were in view and it was fantastic. This is the view I will come to really enjoy daily.

There are some big mountains right by the coast. There are some big mountains right by the coast.I stopped by the church and had a great chat with Jason, the student ministries director, and Ken, our communications director. Both are great guys who I’m looking forward to working with and getting to know. We then met at the new house to sign some paperwork and get the keys. Yes! We have a place to live. It’s a bit smaller than our place in Minneapolis, but it will work fine. We met 2 of our neighbors who seemed very nice.

In fact, that’s one thing I’m looking forward too–getting to know neighbors and seeing them more regularly. Since the complex has a pool and exercise room, I’m hoping we’ll actually see that happen. The next step is to get our furniture moved in, buy a new couch and unpack. I have most of next week off to accomplish that. Then it’s time to get to work.

Thanks for reading these little travel logs and for praying for us. There are a lot of things that could have gone wrong along the way, and none of them did. I’m most glad for that. At the end of the trip, we were all a bit saddle sore, but still speaking to each other–so we have that going for us, which is nice.

Soon I’ll be back in the thick of things and writing up all things tech. I’m glad you were part of our journey!

Stats: Day 5

Total Miles: 261 (1942 Total)

Overall Average Speed: 60.3 MPH

Moving Average Speed: 68.3 MPH

Moving Time:  3:54 (28:26 Total)

I also did some MPG calculations in Vegas. Up to that point, my ’99 Accord 4-cyl 5-speed was averaging 35.5 MPG. The ’06 CR-V was getting just over 32. Not too shabby considering we were moving at nearly 70 MPH for 28 hours with the A/C on. We beat my estimates of gas mileage by 5 MPH for both cars. Sweet!