What a change from all those years of hearing from our parents the expression of love that went like this: "You want to leave home? Don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out."
During this particular transition, all the hippies on the planet were creating their own transition back to nature.
For that back-to-nature purpose, we split up our relatively happy Arlington bicycle hippie household in the spring of 1974. Rob and I headed back to Utah. Becky and Ted moved to Grottoes, Virginia, in the Shenandoah Valley's Rockingham County.
They rented a house. It had a huge living room, which they furnished with Ted's 12" TV, a lawn chair, and a couple of throw rugs. It had a bedroom, a bathroom, a kitchen, and a cistern under the back porch. The house was heated with a woodstove in the living room, an electric blanket in the bedroom, a space heater in the bathroom, and a cookstove in the kitchen. Very cozy.
The Shenandoah Valley has some of the best bicycling in North America: Mountains to build strength, but without the thin air of higher altitude and without the awful heat and humidity of lower altitude, rolling hills on well-maintained Virginia byways, steep and curvy Blue Ridge hills you can fly down on sew-up tires, your chrome double-butted spokes and your Campagnolo Record hubs sparkling in the sunshine.
Becky and Ted rode their bikes the 30 miles round trip to their job at a bicycle shop there in Harrisonburg. "Their job" is literal. The shop needed one mechanic. Both Becky and Ted had mechanical skills and neither of them wanted to work full time, so sometimes Becky worked and sometimes Ted worked. When one of them was working, the other one stayed home to tend the garden, bake bread, cut wood, grind flour, harvest acorns and do all the other stuff respectable hippie types did when they went back to nature.
Becky decided to turn the job entirely over to Ted when summer came. They needed more money to make the rent, so Becky went in search of her own job.