Featured

Hitchin' Denver to California: What Could Go Wrong? (Pt. 1)

"Ugh if I didn't get tickets to PUP in February I could've stayed in Vegas goddamit."

I had just gotten back to Denver after touring California with my band Rotten Reputation, and was faced with the task of heading back almost immediately to LA for a music festival I had said yes to playing a few months prior. "I've gotta stop planning this far ahead, I'm bouncing back and forth and at this point it's getting exhausting," I thought as I got my pack together with some fresh clothes and extra cans of soup. I left my friend's place in Lakewood, CO a lot later than I had planned and took the bus to the only really accessible truck stop west of Denver. I posted up on the closest on ramp which thankfully was right across the street from the bus stop, and immediately knew that my day was going to be long and arduous.

Today was going to be a lesson. Every hitching trip I've taken thus far has been luckily filled with fast, easy rides that got me exactly where I was trying to go, with the good grace of getting housed every night, which I took for granted as a solo traveling trans girl. Today was going to be different. Today I was trying to get through the Rockies headed west, and what I thought was going to be an easy ride to at least Grand Junction turned into a whole fuckin thing.

There was hardly any space for prospective rides to pull over, but I didn't see many other options. I posted up in the hot summer sun, wearing pants and an extremely breathable white long sleeve shirt that honestly saved my skin for the entirety of this journey. I was hot, but I wasn't burning, and I had plenty of water to keep me hydrated in the 90+ weather. After a decent amount of time, a truck pulled over, and I hurriedly ran up to the passenger side window.

"I'm only headed to Golden, but I figure it's further west than this, and you can take the 58 to the 6 to I-70, if you're sick of waiting out here?"
"I'm inclined to take this ride just for your air conditioning honestly."
"Yeah that's fair. Hop on in."

It was a short ride, but ultimately worth it. The driver dropped me at the shamrock across from another on ramp, and assessing my surroundings, I decided to walk down the on ramp and try to catch a ride on the shoulder of 58. Much to my relief, I found some shade, and plenty of room for someone to pull over. What followed was more and more waiting, until another truck pulled over and said he was headed to Frisco. That would get me west and on I-70 so I eagerly accepted, figuring it would be the best ride I was going to get from this spot. I threw my pack in the bed, and we started making our way west.

img_0468-jpg.52438_Hitchin' Denver to California: What Could Go Wrong? (Pt. 1)_Travel Stories_Squat the Planet_{posttime}




If you've ever driven on I-70, you know that it's a beautiful drive. You may also know that it's got traffic almost as bad as Denver proper, which is infuriating if you'e trying to get somewhere, but if you're just soaking in scenery like this, it could be a lot worse. Stop and go traffic also gave the driver and I some time to talk. I appreciate a good conversation, but if I have to play another 20 questions about me being trans, I'm just gonna bullshit my way through. He seemed generally like an accepting fellow, but he threw on a movie in his center console and every other line of dialogue included the word faggot, so, ya know, I don't know. He did offer to buy me lunch, and having not eaten anything that morning, I was willing to endure another hour of Alpha Dog.

It was late afternoon when we pulled into Frisco, CO, and I was sure to thank the man when he dropped me at the Walmart not too far from the exit. I walked the length of the strip mall adjacent to the warehouse, and sat down outside of a Safeway figuring out what my next plan was. The sun was starting to set, and I figured I'd better start looking for a spot to sleep. As I was sitting there, another traveler with a dog walked up and asked if he could sit with me. I of course said yes, and he introduced himself as Melanin Mike (he was tired of going by Black Mike). We sat there and talked for a bit, I gave his pup Jemma some water, and Mike had Jemma show me the tricks she knew. I was surprised at how smart of a dog she was for how young she is. Mike said he picked her up in Austin while hopping, like what a fuckin groundscore.

Before long, a homebum rides up on his bike and offers us the beer that he's drinking "cuz he doesn't like it," and I take it cuz while I hate IPAs, I don't say no to a free beer. He offers us cigarettes, which Mike graciously accepts, and I politely decline as I don't smoke. Homebum apparently took offense to that, and got mad at me for not taking his cig.
I didn't know what to say, so I just said nothing. I felt like the only people who get mad when you don't take something they offer, either has ulterior motives, or is just looking for something to be mad at. He moved past it quickly though, and said that he knew of a spot where we could camp for the night. The sun was sitting lower in the sky, and Mike and I looked at each other and shrugged. Fuck it, why not?

img_0477-jpg.52439_Hitchin' Denver to California: What Could Go Wrong? (Pt. 1)_Travel Stories_Squat the Planet_{posttime}


Homebum took us to a clearing in some high bushes outside of the whole foods parking lot, and it honestly seemed cozy enough for all three of us. At this point though, things took a turn for the aggro. As the sun set over the mountains, homebum started peppering "fag" into his speech, as well as the n word. Hard R. Mike and I looked at each other and both were just like

"Well, fuck. This is happening. Time to go."

Mike started shouldering his pack and homebum starts getting real aggro with us, yelling about how we took his beer and cigarettes and he doesn't get anything in return, and trying to make us stay while also telling us to get the fuck out of his spot, and finally saying "I'm not a fag but about you give me a kiss on the lips?" to me. Mike was fucking ready to go, and not wanting things to escalate further I picked up my shit and we dipped out as fast as we could. On the way out we spotted a giant fire ant hill, and I thought that maybe it's a good thing we didn't end up there that night. Fucker would get what he deserved.

Mike seemed to trust me, and I trusted Mike, so we decided to stick together for the rest of the night. We made our way back to the strip mall, and I decided I needed a drink after hearing faggot more times than I cared to all day, so we stopped by a liquor store and I grabbed a small bottle of whiskey for us to split later. While I was in there, Mike asked another homebum about good spanging spots, and he told us to hit up some of the bars on mainstreet. We thanked him for the direction, and started walking the two miles to Old Town Frisco.

I figured it'd be dead, cuz ya know, ski town in the summer on a Wednesday, but as we walked the main drag I didn't expect everything to be closed. The only thing that seemed open was this bar called Moose Jaw, and so we sat down in front of the fence bordering the front patio and struck up some conversations with a few passers by. I broke out my guitar and gave some light acoustic ambiance to the chilly mountain summer night, and drew the attention of a man who we'll call Tim. Tim had just quit his job, and was celebrating his last day at work. He offered us a burger and some beer, but only if we came inside. We eagerly agreed, but once we stepped inside the small somewhat crowded bar with our packs and a dog, we instantly felt extremely out of place.

I spotted a corner table next to some outlets and we set our packs down, not having the money to buy anything ourselves, we waited at the table trying to spot Tim, but couldn't find him anywhere. The KM came out of the kitchen and started giving Mike shit about having Jemma in the bar, to which Mike replied that she was his service dog (she actually was.) When the KM asked to see his papers, I pointed out that he can't legally ask that, and he stormed off side eyeing us. I spotted Tim, and he had forgotten that he offered to get us food. He ordered us a burger, which Mike scarfed down immediately while my veggie ass munched on the fries. Then Tim came over with a couple beers for us, and sat down and we talked story for a bit. He introduced us to his friends that he was celebrating with, and they all were interested in our tales of travel, and they seemed really cool with us once they got to know us. Jemma appreciated the pets and extra attention, and the more folks we talked to, the more drinks we were offered. I did some tipsy divination card readings (similar to Tarot) for a gentleman who was going through a hell of a lot of changes, and he really appreciated the advice I was able to give him. The night turned into a rambunctious event filled with laughter and good company, and was a welcome reprieve from the bullshit earlier in the evening. The KM even came out and apologized to Mike for how he treated him, and offered some extra food. It turned out to be one of the best nights I've ever had on the road. It was getting late though, and Mike and I still needed to find a spot to sleep, so we bid our adieus and started walking to the base of a mountain right outside of town where Mike said he had camped out a year earlier.

We found a nice little depression in the trees near a walking trail, that while small and visible in the day time, you couldn't see us while we were laying down, and was well hidden at night, which was honestly all we needed. We laid out a tarp, set up our sleeping gear, and passed the whiskey between the two of us while telling stories of elation and woe. I looked up past the trees into the night sky, saw the milky way, and thought "Oh yeah. This is why I do this."

I fell asleep next to a new friend, and felt happy to be back on the road. I couldn't wait for whatever was coming next.
 
Last edited:
Hey! It’s ya girl, Honey Crust. Bein’ queer and drinkin beer 😘 I’m a polyamorous trans girl that likes playing music and finding herself in places she’s never been. Got nine tours under my belt with a number of bands, and I started hitchhiking...
View all 1 featured items

Older Than Dirt

Wanderer
Joined
Mar 5, 2019
Messages
292
Age
60
Current Location
Upstate
A pretty epic tale throughout, and very well-written. But this part

"I'm not a fag but about you give me a kiss on the lips?"
Just damn. As a heterosexual man, ive gotten my ass kicked for being a "hippie faggot" in the '70s, and then for being a "punk rock faggot" after 1977. And i always suspected this about the kind of dudes that do that shit, but still, damn...

Thank you for educating me on how easy i've had it being a butch cis dude. Keep doing that thing that you do, and be safe.
 
Click here to buy one of our amazing custom bandanas!
OP
Honey Crust

Honey Crust

Rambler
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
108
Age
23
Current Location
Laramie, WY
Website
flowercrownmeaqueen.bandcamp.com
Thank you! I've got part 2 comin up soon, and later you're gonna be seeing a lot more of that kind of bullshit. As far as my extended trips have gone, this one was for sure the sketchiest. I'm happy Mike and I had each other's backs, but fuck if that wouldn't have turned real nasty real quick.

It's strange for me navigating the road because on one hand to stay safe I usually present masc, as in I hitch in pants and a t-shirt and access to shaving is pretty sparse on the road, but I've been on hormones for long enough that my face still reads as feminine, and people may not consciously acknowledge it, but it's definitely something they pick up on and notice subconsciously. On the other, I hate having to dress like that all the time for safety, and my femininity only comes out around people I can trust, which is hard to tell right off the bat.

I try to carry myself in such a way that people won't try to fuck with me, from wearing a big knife on my hip, to wearing combat boots, to my general attitude. It's all surface level intimidation though. I have knuckle tattoos, but they say "Love" and "Hope" respectively. It's to keep the people who generally try to fuck with me away, and it invites folks who actually take a closer look.

To this day no one has kicked my ass for being transgender, and in this day and age, that's saying something.
 

roughdraft

RápidoCorrenLosCarrosRespletoLosRielesDFerrocarril
Joined
Oct 16, 2015
Messages
1,090
Current Location
eastern shore of MD, USA
something i just wanna throw into the philosophical mix here

i personally believe that if i reject a cigarette or beer or even food, and someone gets angry, they are extremely selfconscious, identifying only with the material things they can give, as if that's all their worth and I am rejecting THEM. I have heard "ah you dont smoke anymore...that kinda makes me...hate you" "peer pressure" and "come on, come on. one won't hurt!" and what i gotta say "yes it will" that's wack.

for real, if one person can't accept another doesnt drink, smoke or eat meat or mayoinese for example, they aren't wrapped too tight. this homebum proved that
 

Koala

sleeps 22 hours a day, eats chutes and leaves
Joined
Nov 3, 2015
Messages
536
Age
23
Current Location
Australia
Website
ciggybuttbrain.wordpress.com
Awesome writeup, thanks for sharing :) Looking forward to part 2

And hell yeah to those days/nights/moments where you bask in the awe of "ahhhh this is exactly why U do this!" ♡
 

Older Than Dirt

Wanderer
Joined
Mar 5, 2019
Messages
292
Age
60
Current Location
Upstate
@Honey Crust - You are probably much too nice a girl to actually enjoy this video as much as i do, but may nonetheless get a certain satisfaction from it.

I told a story here about watching a mouthy homophobe get shit kicked out of him by two NYC waterfront "street sissies". Here we see a very similar series of events unfold in the NYC subway.

i apologize for the hosting context but World Star is the only place that lets this video stay up, youtube removes it every time someone re-posts it. This video first got noticed in 2011 when site queerty posted it with the very apt headline "Trans Woman Delivers Rag-Doll Beatdown In Subway Station".

The beat-ee had yelled "That's a man!" as the gals passed by in the other direction. Chances are he does not do that anymore.


Can't wait for Part 2!
 
Last edited:

Juan Derlust

Resident itinerant paradoxymoron
Joined
Mar 6, 2017
Messages
1,087
Current Location
in medias res
Not a huge deal -
keep on rolling & writing, pics too!

re @Older Than Dirt's video, not a huge fan of violence
- UNLESS it's justified
another fool who couldn't STAY IN HIS LANE
 
Last edited:

Older Than Dirt

Wanderer
Joined
Mar 5, 2019
Messages
292
Age
60
Current Location
Upstate
Violence directed at the weak, the defenseless, the innocent, of course that's some repugnant shit. As i said above, i've been on the receiving end of it plenty of times.

But the violence of the oppressed, the fucked-with, taking some shit back, that is some beautiful shit. It is especially delicious when those who assume they can dish out violence (verbal or otherwise) without consequences find out that things don't always work out the way we imagine they will.

Love that homegirl takes Mr. Acid-Wash Jeans down and houses him in what have to be at least 3" heels, and without setting down her purse.

Of course, these are the unfortunate and troglodyte views of a cis male ex-LES skinhead, and i am probably a victim of my hormones and upbringing; i blame late capitalism.
___________

With this post, i have suddenly become "Top Poster Of The Month". Note to self: Schedule period of self-reflection as whether there may possibly have been too much day-drinking lately.
 
Last edited:
OP
Honey Crust

Honey Crust

Rambler
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
108
Age
23
Current Location
Laramie, WY
Website
flowercrownmeaqueen.bandcamp.com
@Honey Crust - You are probably much too nice a girl to actually enjoy this video as much as i do, but may nonetheless get a certain satisfaction from it.
That's very sweet of you to assume, but I am in fact just like every other girl who enjoys watching transphobes getting their teeth kicked in! Beautiful start to my morning, this video lol
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

About us

  • Squat the Planet is the world's largest social network for misfit travelers. Join our community of do-it-yourself nomads and learn how to explore the world by any means necessary.

    More Info

Support StP!

Donations go towards paying our monthly server fees, adding new features to the website, and occasionally putting a burrito in Matt's mouth.

Total amount
$20.00
Goal
$100.00

Monthly Goals

  1. Paying the Bills
    $20.00 of $50.00
    The first $50 in donations go towards paying our monthly server fees and adding new features to the website. Once this goal is reached, we'll see about feeding Matt that burrito.
  2. Buy Matt a Beer
    $20.00 of $75.00
    Now that we have the bills paid for this month, let's give Matt a hearty thank you by buying him a drink for all the hard work he's done for StP. Hopefully his will help keep him from going insane after a long day of squishing website bugs.
  3. Feed Matt a Burrito
    $20.00 of $100.00
    Now that the bills are paid and Matt has a beer in his hand, how about showing him your love by rewarding all his hard work with a big fat burrito to put in his mouth. This will keep him alive while programming new features for the website.
  4. Finance the Shopping Cart
    $20.00 of $200.00
    Now that the bills are paid and Matt is fed, perhaps it's time to start planning for those twilight years under the bridge... if only he had that golden shopping cart all the oogles are bragging about these days.

Latest Status Updates

DisfunctionalBliss wrote on sydaavicious's profile.
Ta ta ta..... Building treehouses, pallet houses, rocket stoves, and all sorts of wacky live of the land shit. Want a change? Feel free to check us out: Auburn WA....just south of Seattle. Can help u on ur travels too
Back online... Sorry I haven´t been active. Moving to the UK with my little family for a while.
50% of needed gas funds for OR trip obtained ✔
Bey
The Dumpster giveth...! Good skipping today, with some line struggle, though, over the freegan vs. "meegan" positions...
van dwelling in san antonio. about to get on the road to oregon or someplace by end of the month. i'm still so fucked up about my dear friend @Multifaceted passing away and need to get out of our hometown..
Confirmation that travel expenses will be covered has been APPROVED! I'M OUTTA HERE!
For years now I've been told to check out r/vagabond and I looked into it. Its terrible and I'm glad i haven't met those people.
Glad to be active again here on STP. I realize now how much I missed this community
Heading to Oregon this week...anyone wanna ride along?

Staff online