It’s finally feeling like Arizona in the winter again. Well, actually it feels more like Spring. This is the time of year around these parts when you sleep with the windows open. When the seasons change it always seems to take me back in time in my mind to the ones that are long gone. I drift back to the adolescent days of Spring Break.

There was a lot more freedom for youngsters when I was a kid, more trust. I was hitchhiking long before I was a teenager. Part of it was living in a small town. It’s a sinking feeling to see people you know smile and wave as they pass by you as you walk backward with your thumb sticking out. That was back before Fonzie made the thumbs up extra cool.

By the time I hit high school we’d moved to Phoenix. I was none too thrilled about the move that I got zero input on. Funny how God seems to know way more than a Freshman in high school…

It took awhile, but I eventually made friends with the next-door neighbor, who incidentally became one of my life long best friends.

Come spring break time that first year in high school my buddy Lanny and I managed to hitch a ride back up to Lake Havasu City, the place that still had my heart at the time. We got some provisions, fishin’ poles, and a ride from my brother, who was lucky enough to be grown so he could live where he wanted to, and got dropped off at the edge of the pavement on old Highway 95.

Image courtesy of havasusprings.com

It was about three quarters of a meandering mile through the rugged desert to get to the lake. Not an easy task dragging a cooler in the days before they thought to add those fancy circles they call wheels to the bottom of them.

We set up camp in a clearing about twenty feet from the water back in a secluded cove that promised good fishin’. We traveled light so there would be no fancy things like a tent to protect us from mosquitos or anything else for that matter.

When you sleep in the virgin desert you share it with the critters that live there. The musk rats were harmless enough, red racers too, but the rattlesnakes you had to watch out for, coyotes too. We ate what we caught. Eating mostly catfish for almost a week gets old, but beats starving.

I typed the majority of this post out at the airport in Phoenix. We’re heading to California with my youngest for spring break. It’s been a long time since I got to see her over a spring break.

I believe that most of us think we’re in control of our destiny. We tend to over estimate the gift from God of our free will. The truth is if I had got my way all of my life it would look significantly different than it does today, and not for the better to be sure.

It’s times like today that I remember the verse in Proverbs; “A man’s heart plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.” And I’m grateful for the mercy and grace that I didn’t even know I was receiving. God doesn’t need hindsight to see 20/20…