A Road of Her Own: Women's Journeys in the West

Fulcrum Publishing, 2002

Edited by Marlene Blessing

The expanse of the western landscape shines through in these twenty stories. This clear and crisp view refracted inside a woman's eye spills out to the page, opening the wide range of your happenstance heart.
Recommended by Donna, Powells.com

From my essay, "Walking Home":

One sunny morning in August two decades ago, I stood at the Eagle Creek trailhead in northwest Wyoming's Absaroka Mountains. A green backpack towered over my head, stuffed with food, clothing, compact stove, sleeping bag, tent, and other essentials. Sadie, a German short-haired pointer, sat next to me, her dog packs strapped on, quivering with excitement. A shutter clicked. David, my friend Joan's teenage son, handed my camera back to me. 

"Well," he said, eyeing my bulging backpack, "I hope you've got everything."

"If I don't," I replied with a small smile, "it doesn't matter, because I can't carry another ounce."

I handed him the keys to my compact pickup. "The truck's yours until I get back. And there better not be a scratch on it!"

David took the keys, grinned, got into the truck, and started the engine. "Be careful," he said. "See you in a week or so."

I waved good-bye as he turned the truck, and pulled it onto the highway. The pickup grew smaller and smaller, then disappeared around a bend in the valley. The noise of the engine died away and all was quiet except for the wind in the trees and the river rushing under the footbridge. I shivered, a wave of goose bumps marching across my skin, then shook myself. It was too late now for doubts or fear. ....

I was twenty-five years old and running away from my life. ....