Thursday, August 19

Desert Magic

I don't know how to put my finger on it, but there is an electrical magic to the area we have been traveling through.

We have been spending a lot of time on Navajo land, and perhaps it is a reflection of their spirit, but spine hairs tingle a lot around here. We have been simply havinga wonderful time.

What have we been up to you ask?
Welll.. I am excited to tell you :)

The Petrified Forest, and museum, and a crazy night in the historic Wigwam motel.

We set out for Gallup New Mexico.
We visited the Hubbel Trading post in Ganado. The air thick with the energy of the past, a trading post since the 1880s. The first of its kind in this entire area.

We also stopped at a variety of picture perfect places......the best up a dirt road ( we thought there were ruins called Wide Ruin, but it was simply the name of the area :) ...we travelled for quite a while. We like the road less travelled :)

Tuesday and Wednesday-
Finally we made it to Gallup, checked in to the Red Roof Motel and took in the old town on Route 66.
Ofcourse this involved a drive in diner, Richardson's Trading Post, El Rancho amongst others. We spent two nights here wandering the old streets appreciating the architecture and the echoes of those who came before, along route 66. All to the tune of the trains rolling by.
So good.

It is now Thursday.
We made it to Chinle to take in the Canyon de Chelly and thought that would be all before heading back to Flagstaff and our friends there.
Who new it is carnival, rodeo, pow wow week :)

We went to a carnival, country fair this eve ( before the mini tornado hit, thunder and lightning and a mad dash for the car ) and tomorrow brings more of the canyon by day, and the rodeo and pow wow in the evening.

Yayayayayayayyay..... I am beyond excited to be able to be present at a Navajo Pow wow. There will not be pics of this to share out of respect, but I will try to describe it well here.

Saturday returns us to the home of Rebecca and Paul and their furries for a few days of all Flag has to offer ( think dry thoughts everyone.......)

We just seem to sort of be in the right place at the right time ( touch wood ) at the moment...such a magical place to be.

Tuesday, August 17

How to Survive in the desert.....the girly girl guide. the desert offers up some challenges to us girls.
The heat, the dry air, the beating sun and the dust....there is a lot of dust.

Here are some of the things I have learned to help you survive this seemingly inhospitable dustbath.

do NOT leave your house, car, motel, what have you without your hat on.
Even if you think you are only stopping for 5 minutes. there is so much to see and it is easy to let 30 minutes go by in full sun and then........HOT HEAD is no fun.
"You can leave your hat on"

leave the polyester at want cotton, cotton and more cotton. nough said?

the dust is your friend.
I know this may seem an odd thing to say but really, when staying for one or two nights in motels, baths and hot showers can be hard to come by ( or at least any with water pressure enough to remove the desert).
Embrace the dust on your body....spray a little bug spray and this will sort of shellac your dust onto your body and give you a really good tan without even trying :)

4- don't let them see you sweat
when the locals tell you TERRIBLE rattle snake/scorpion etc etc stories, keep a cool head
I know you will want to run screaming from the room, but just chill.
I have it on good authority those noisy snakes are more afraid of us than we are of least that is what the girl who hung the dead rattle snake over the sign post after someone else killed it, told me.

Oh and if you hear a rattling noise....believe it and move away. They really are out there.

Pack your water everywhere..just like your hat and drink it.
If you are really lucky you will have a good friend who cleans up a cooler for you to use so you can keep cold water handy in the back seat, and your peanut butter granola bars will not melt into putridness.
Thanks Rebecca :)

6- Moisturizer.
The moisturizer you use at home will not be enough.....get a heavy cream, and use it often...the air sucks the moisture right out of you. Especially your feet, and in reference to tip #3...just mix it in to the soup already happening with the dust and the bug spray...its the's all good.

and finally....

7-Cool ranch chips taste different in the desert. I don't know why..maybe all the dust in your mouth......but they are different.

In all seriousness though.....the desert is freakin' amazing and you really should tromp around in it to really understand just how great it is, However you need to give it respect and never leave for a road trip/day trip etc, without your hat, water and comfy shoes.

Happy trails.

Sunday, August 15

Day 5.......

There is so much to take in here in this vast, vast...OMG...really freakin huge ( but in a good way) beautiful desert.

Our hosts have been amazing, a little like being guests in our own home, except for the whole desert thing, oh and much smaller dogs, and flashflood worries and well.... you get the idea. :) fonts of knowledge about all to see and do, as well as great company.

We hit the Grand Canyon on a weekend that offered all the national parks free access. To take advantage of this, we also had to prepare oursleves for the crowds...eeeekk the humanity.

It wasn't that bad and sooooo worth it. ( Okay it was pretty bad and the group of curiously attired, 60 yr. old umm something ladies that had to keep telling everyone "WE ARE HAVING THE MOST FUN EVER......REALLY THE MOST FUN, YOU JUST CAN'T IMAGINE...REALLY THE MOST FUN!!!!" I wanted to believe them, but cynical me think
s they were trying to convince themselves more )it was still worth it though.
We stopped at the Watchtower and took some pics, then had a really amazing lunch at the historical Mary Coulter designed, "El Torva", home to the
Harvey Girls in their day ( yes I thought about Judy Garland a lot ) Google Mary Coulter..what an incredible woman.
We scored a window seat looking out at the Grand canyon :) awesome.

The view came complete with the beautiful sunshine, a telescope and a cowboy sleeping under a tree in his chaps......sheer perfection.


We then hiked through the Tusayan ruins further down the canyon.
A very tucked away treasure deep in the forest of the Grand Canyon.
Daiv played flute to the ruins of homes (their Kivas) and there was no one else around at all.......bliss.

Our ride home took us to a series of
Navajo trading posts and Daiv and I spent a long time talking to a couple of really great Navajo warm and talented - so excited to share their knowledge about all things Navajo.

Daiv has found the perfect turquoise bracelet and we heard about the rattle snake that visited the same spot on the Little Colorado River I was standing on that was killed and hung up over a fence post , just recently ( shudders ) I think she "Patricia" enjoyed telling me that one. She did share two huge glasses of sun tea while she told this story and it was freakin' delicious and we were thirsty.

I have also been ummmm shopping and have some truly spetacular jewelry, made on the Navajo Nation to bring home :)

The eve saw us all sitting out under the stars watching the meteor showers and talking over wine til the wee hours :).... really really realllllly good here! Look at this sunset...yup...every day!

Friday, August 13

We are finally in the desert, on route 66, singing and laughing and stopping at all sorts of points of interest on our way to Flagstaff. First ten minutes on 66.

-tumbleweeds roll in front of us...
-radio plays wicked old 50s tunes
- I sing everytime we see a route marker... soooooooo gooooood!

We stopped for lunch at a place called the Last Stop cafe, it looked like it diner/bar with double swinging saloon doors and met a family taveling from Venice, shared lunch with them and then back to the road....

This is daiv at a place called the Hackberry General Store......seriously cool, snapshot of time of route 66 memorabilia.....

Yup, this is me....feeling super coollllll...even though it is super hot, but a good 'dry furnace blast of heat', kind of hot..I like!

Awwwwww the open road....finally...all to ourselves.

"get your kicks on route 66"

 cool is this place? Hackberry General Store...exactly what route 66 should look like.

WE continued to Flagstaff and settled in to a friend's place where we can daytrip around from for then next 4 days or so....

Today saw us at the Navajo Nation's Cameron trading Post looking for the perfect Turquoise.
We found some....tee hee..... must sleep now...more to come.
Tomorrow is the Grand Canyon...whooot!

vegas part 2

The lights , the sounds, the water, the people...we felt a bit like hippy freaks in donald duck's brain.....but we did have some fun through the eve over fancy drinks and eavsdropping on long lamenting poker players nit doing very well.

The Bellagio glass ceiling

the strip at night..

We head out early in the morning as we want to get the Hoover dam.
..finally open road and desert

...ummmmm open road????


Apparently the security checks at the dam and road construction equalled lining up again...this time in a hot car...bumper to bumper.....I coasted, never touching the gas, only the break pedal, for an hour and a half through this new insanity. UNfreakinbelievable!!!!!!!!!!!

The dam was cool..but we did not stop. Route 66 here we come...

to be cont....

Vegas to Flagstaff

We are here in Flagstaff enjoying the tremendous hospitality of our friends who lie in paradise on the outskirts of Flagstaff against the San Francisco Peaks.

The trip started out ineventfully...planes, all on time....line ups......Victoria was fine, Seattle kinda a nightmare, 90 minutes to get through.

We met a great guy on the plane who lives outside Vegas and we chatted the 2 hours away easilly.

We get to Vegas........
we go to rent the car......
we are lined up at hertz ( yet another lonnnnnnng line up ) and finally get to counter....nope...we reserved with advantage..doh!

Skedaddle to their desk and are totally icky smarmy man icked out in 30 seconds. He tries to upsell everything, gets pissed when we say no, too bad.
Finally get our xterra and hit the vegas strip to the Flamingo.

We walk into the classic Flamingo after much open jawed, holy shit, reaction to this crazy town and end up in a line up for 40 mintues before we finally get to our check in. OI!!!!!!

We were dingy dingied, beep beepit beeped out, so chilled in room and then went to Penn and teller.......OMG so great.

We did the strip at midnight, walking along taking it all in, including the water show at the Bellagio and all that jazz... the glass display there was also pretty fab... More to come on next blog...

Monday, August 9

On the road again....

David and I are preparing to take off to parts unknown in Northern Arizona and New Mexico.

I will blog our Route 66 adventures here :)

Anyone have any good spots to check out in Northern Arizona they can recommend?

Monday, August 2

Hello blogworld

I can't believe how long it has been.
Much has happened and I have been busier than I ever imagined.
Peter Pan took up the bulk of my life and I was so proud of everyone involved. It was fantastic.

I will catch my breath and come back and write a proper posty newsy thing.

Now perhpas you would like to tell me how you are spending your summer?