August 27, 2012

road trips and more....

As much as I love traveling, it's good to be home! This week my family and I flew the coop and headed out to the Fabulous Las Vegas, Zion National Park and Hoover Dam. We crossed four states, survived a desert thunder storm and walked the Vegas Strip - all with Lucas (and Dada) in tow. Believe me. The idea of taking a road trip and flying back with a 4 month old worried me a bit, however in the end, the trip was 100% worth it. Lucas did very well.

We crossed the Nevada boarder just after the sun went down. From miles away, I could see the glow of the Vegas Strip lighting up the night sky. The tip of the Luxor hotel stood out among the lights with its fixed position spotlight pointing directly towards the heavens. Apparently, the spotlight can be seen from outer space. At night, Las Vegas is impressive. The hotels and casinos are beautiful to look at. However, during the's a whole other story. Vegas looses its glamour. The surrounding geography, desert hills and overall cleanliness reminds me of Hemet (on a bad day) or banning.


I snapped a quick shot of my husband and Lucas just as they got out of the car. Lucas did very well until the last hour or was a long drive from Riverside to Las Vegas. He was tired of being in the car seat, and was ready for his bath and bed. When I got up to our room, I opened the window expecting to see a view of the strip...but no...instead I saw a herd of cattle. The cows were for the South Point NCHA Futurity Show. The next morning my husband and I walked over and watch the riders warm up for the preliminary qualification rounds.
I could get use to this arena. Indoors, without the sun, heat, wind, and or dust. With air conditioning..These horses and riders have it good!

One of the many highlights from the trip was staying at Zion National Park. Unfortunately, words can not express the natural wild beauty of the park. My neck was aching from looking up at the towering canyon walls, high mountain peaks and crisp water dripping down the rocks. The hikers on top of the canyon looked like miniature birds clinging to the ropes and chains that kept them safe from falling. We stayed at the Zion Lodge, which had a quaint rustic feel. I took the opportunity to go horseback riding. My horse's name was Chester. He was a good horse. On horseback, our guide took me and the other riders out into the national forest. The views were breath taking! Later, the whole family gathered at the Cafe, boarded the Zion Tram and headed to the Riverside Trail at the top of the Canyon.

Back in Vegas, we walked through the casinos. I was impressed with the shops in The Venetian. For serious shoppers, the sales associates provide cake and Champagne. Not that I'd be able to afford anything to be a serious shopper, but it was fun to look through the windows. After walking around, we headed back and Lucas stayed with Dada and Dadi, which allowed my husband and I to go back out and enjoy the night life in Vegas.

Hoover Dam was amazing! A monument to pure American ingenuity. My husband and I took the power plant tower while Lucas waited with Dada and Dadi in the visitor's center. The rumble of the vibrations from the water flowing through the pipes could be felt deep in my chest. 

The trip was amazing...and I am glad to be home. I am thankful for the opportunity to travel. Now its time to get back to everyday life. :) 

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