Are you a business owner of a small to medium sized business, or perhaps you are in a management position within a larger organisation? Are you looking for the next big win or opportunity to make significant business improvements?
Perhaps your business is already heading in the right direction but you are looking to ramp up your business results and achieve even greater success? This course will take you through my step-by-step process to turn your business into a money making machine. Through this easy to follow course, you will discover a range of tools, tips and techniques to take your business to the next level and achieve results you never thought possible. This course will teach you how to really dive into your business and unleash its untapped potential. This course is a combination of video instruction and tutorials, skill-building worksheets and templates, step-by-step guides and an interactive forum for personalized responses and feedback to support you as you embark on your path to enlightenment!
This course will give you the skills and tools you need to jump straight in to boosting your business results and turning your business into a money making machine – giving you the proven recipe for understanding and continually improving your business performance. You don’t need anything to get started, just bring your brain and your favorite caffeinated (or non-caffeinated!) beverage! Make sure you have your notepad ready and your pencil poised, you’re going to want to take lots of notes!
You will be able to systematically identify what works and what doesn’t work in your business. You will be able to tap into pockets of gold that you uncover through this process, giving you the keys to ultimate success in your business. Your browser does not support inline frames or is currently configured not to display inline frames.
If you use Excel, you can create a project schedule with almost no learning curve by downloading Vertex42's free Gantt Chart Template. For complicated project management activities, you may need a tool such as Microsoft Project. While planning a project, you may also want to use a yearly calendar or project budget worksheet.
Gantt Chart Template Pro is a spreadsheet, just like the free version, except that it is unlocked and includes quite a few other features that make it more powerful. Unlocked - The pro version does not use password protected sheets, so you have access to all Excel features.
Color-Coding - The XLSX version lets you choose different colors for the bars (default=blue, r=red, k=black, o=orange, y=yellow, p=purple, g=green, 1-6 = theme-based accent colors). The Pro version for Google Sheets does almost everything that the XLSX version does, but it doesn't have a monthly view (only daily & weekly). Create timeline charts quickly and easily using our new Timeline Template ($19.95 when purchased separately). This Event Schedule is great for scheduling classes or presentations for workshops, conferences, and seminars. Download a pre-populated project schedule for 3 different sample projects: (1) Home Construction Project Schedule, (2) Custom Software Project Schedule, (3) Website Development Project Schedule. Analyze your project schedule using the critical path method (CPM) with our CPM spreadsheet ($14.95 when purchased separately). I placed answers to most of the questions that I get asked in a Help section within the GanttChart worksheet.
You use Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) numbering to organize your tasks in an outline form, as shown in the image to the right. To indent the text in the Task column, you can modify the cell formatting to include an indent (shortcut: Ctrl+Alt+Tab), or add spaces before the text. In the professional version, you can choose which set of inputs you want to use for defining each task. You use different methods within the same worksheet as shown in the image below (the inputs have green backgrounds).
Working Days (default): The Pro version lets you define the duration of a task by entering the start date and the number of work days (excluding weekends and holidays).
End Date: Choosing the end date can be useful when you have a deadline that forces you to complete a task by that date.
Also notice that in the professional version, the Start and End dates are formatted to show the week day.
Even though the time-span displayed in the chart area is limited by the number of columns, the slider bar lets you scroll through a project that spans many months and years. We've added a new feature where you create dependencies by referencing the WBS number of up to 3 Predecessor task(s).
Not everyone wants to use this approach, so in some of the older versions, the Predecessor columns are hidden by default. In the pro version, a worksheet has been added where you can list holidays and other non-working days that you want to exclude. We've begun using our blog as a place to provide answers to common questions and other technical support for Gantt Chart Template Pro. While there is no question that the latest Martin Scorsese’s film The Wolf of Wall Street was a box office hit, the portrayal of Jordan Belfort in the film was over the top and highly criticized for glorifying excess.
Belfort’s firm, Stratton Oakmont was specialists in selling pink-sheet stocks, fraudulent IPO’s or other schemes to the public.His initial success was based on the premise that the rich loved to gamble, particularly when the gamble appeared to be a legitimate business opportunity. Find out what you are passionate about and put all your energy into it – the rest will fall into place. When hiring, look for potential and the right attitude rather than hiring people with great resumes and qualifications. He kept guys like Donnie Azoff (Jonah Hill) and Nicky Koskoff who remained fiercely loyal to him despite not being the “smartest” guys around. Find great people with good attitudes and diverse skill sets and place them in roles that complement each other. Employees knew what to expect from Stratton Oakmont   Belfort transformed young, inexperienced people into solid stock brokers because he was able to teach his process in a way that was simple, and easy to follow. Whether giving his employees the chance to win money throwing midgets at a Velcro wheel or providing them with incentives like office orgy parties including illicit drugs sometimes the two together. Not only is strong corporate culture necessary for keeping your staff happy, it is essential for establishing your company brand and attracting talent. While you may provide a fantastic service or product, if your customer isn’t aware that you’re out there or you don’t have people truly committed to your vision and product out there selling it, a business will struggle to thrive. DiCaprio’s Belfort was a master of giving captivating speeches. Being a polished public speaker and staff motivator are both core skills that a business leader should look to improve on, or pick up.
As obvious and cliche as this last one may be, Belfort wouldn’t have gotten to where he did without learning from his past mistakes. No matter what happened to him throughout the film, whether it was his company going bankrupt or to selling penny stocks from a dodgy warehouse, being investigated by the FBI, or to being in a near cerebral-palsy state from an overdose on Quaaludes, Belfort kept moving forward and conquered each obstacle one at a time.
At 12:30 a€?Cheta€?, from a€?Over the Road Toursa€? picked us up in a twenty seat tour van. The city itself is enormous, stretching some 40 miles in across and encompassing several large mountains. We enjoyed a few hours of shopping, then stopped at a Starbucks for some of that strong nectar.Then, we walked back along the boulevard to the Doubletree, enjoying the sunshine and warm temperatures. Frank Lloyd Wright first came here, in 1937 at age 72, to found a Winter sanctum, to cure his ailing lungs.He ,his wife and acolytes camped in tents for four years, until the prarie-style masterpiece took shape and was completed. The foundation that runs the property is a functioning architectural firm, that admits 11 architectural students a year to mentor with working architects. It was late afternoon and we were tiring, in spite of the arhchitectural brilliance of Taliesin West. We met Jerry and Muriel from Boston, cousins Michelle and Jane from New Jersey and a whole passel of friendly Canadians. It was sunny and nice out, with an azure sky, as we continued up along Oakcreek Canyon along Rte.#89-A. The line of cars, waiting just to enter the Grand Canyon, was an hour long.We sat patiently, awaiting our turn.
We walked along the narrow trail, looking out some ten miles across to the North Rim of the Canyon, 1,000 feet higher in elevation. We walked back to the Maswik lodge and had coffee and danish in the small lodge.Everyone else was up and about.
We were approaching the Glen Canyon Damn.The huge project had created a 200 mile long Lake Powell and filled the huge Glen Canyon to the top with the water from the Green, the Escalante, the Colorado, the little Dirty and the San Juan Rivers, over a 17 year period.
We sat with a Canadian couple and Kim Durham, chatting while everyone trooped up to the breakfast bar.
We took a side road into the a€?Gouldings Trading Post.a€? It is a complex of gift shops, trading posts, a small museum, two dining rooms and a small hotel. Mary and I walked through the museum, the Dukea€™s shrine, the gift shop and then looked all around us at the towering mesas and wierd stone pillars, all covered in a dusty vermillion paint.
After lunch, we saddled up in the back of two very large pick-ups for a tour of the valley.
Kanab, a small metropolis of eight thousand souls, had been an outpost for the early Mormons, who ran their buisinesses under a a€?United ordera€? concept, something like a benevolent socialism, where a€?each got according to his need and gave according to his ability.a€? I found it interesting to see this pocket or socialism so deeply embedded in the American West. The country side was getting more snow-covered as we rose in altitude towards Bryce Canyon. The kids from Florida were laughing and throwing snowballs, unused to playing in the white powder. At a€?Sunset Pointa€? we saw a vast panorama of bright orange hoodoos, with alabaster tops. We stopped by the Zion Lodge for breakfast and then returned to our room to put our bags out and prep for the day. The terrain was getting flatter and browner as we approached the desert mecca of Las Vegas.The passengers were stirring with anticipation at so fabled a destination. After a€?T.Ia€? as it is now called, we walked to the Mirage, former home of Sigfried, Roy and their Tigers. After breakfast, we walked down the strip towards the Luxor Casino, that huge pyramid and assemblage of all things Egyptian. We caught an early dinner in the Zanzibar cafe, at the Alladin, before setting our for a walk along the strip to the Luxor and our show for the evening.
Afterwards, we walked back along the crowded strip, amazed as always at the sheer throngs of people streaming by. It is for students looking for READY TO USE tools and templates, based on REAL LIFE success stories, to help them achieve AMAZING SUCCESS!
But, if you want to create a simple project schedule quickly and easily, you only need basic Excel skills to use this template (such as knowing how to copy and insert rows). Or, use a formula to color-code your project's tasks based on the task owner or the urgency.
For details on this new feature, see the blog article Creating a Gantt Chart with Excel is Getting Even Easier. When you buy this template, you are buying it for your entire team, not just a single computer or user. Each is a separate file, and there is no automated means of transferring information from one file to the other. Like the Excel files, you are allowed to share it privately with your team and it works great for collaboration.
It contains over 100 useful tutorials and is currently priced at $19.95 when purchased separately.
You are welcome to contact me if you have other questions, but please take a look through the Help first. You could enter your own WBS numbers manually, but we have included formulas so you do not need to update the WBS numbers every time you insert a new row. In older versions, this was done by copying and pasting from a set of sample rows at the bottom of the worksheet. This is a critical feature for a project plan when you are using dependent tasks, because if the schedule changes, and the start date changes to a Friday and requires 3 work days to complete, you want to make sure that the new schedule has this task ending on the next Tuesday, not Sunday.
Some projects use 7-day work weeks, or require Saturdays or Sundays to be work days, so this option allows you to handle these cases.
This helps you avoid starting or ending on a weekend, without having to consult a calendar. Normally, if you want to make a task start after the completion of another task, you would enter a formula for the Start date like =enddate+1 or =WORKDAY(enddate,1,holidays), where enddate references the End date of the Predecessor task.
If you reference the WBS using a formula as shown below, the reference will remain correct even after you insert new tasks. This is one of the most frequently asked questions about the pro version of the gantt chart. If you want to create a task that will automatically precede (start before) another task by a certain number of work days, you can use a formula for the start date such as =WORKDAY(reference_date, number_of_days, holidays), where "number_of_days" is a negative number of days and "reference_date" is a reference to the start date of the task you want to precede. Your passion gives you the energy and motivation that is essential to persevere in the face of the inevitable setbacks and obstacles. He tailored his pitch specifically to his target demographic and kept refining his strategy until it worked, then taught it to his team. Belfort built a loyal team that stayed with him through thick and thin by finding the right people to work with.


He recognized how hungry Donnie was to make a change to his life (the guy quit his job to work with Belfort!) and gave him the opportunity to work with him.
While every other department costs money to run, your sales teams bring in the money that drive your business on. He was the face of Stratton Oakmont and communicated his vision, demonstrated his passion and love for the organization by team building activities and motivating his staff. We had tried to check in on-line, with Southwest Airlines, after midnight , and had no success.
Two pools, tennis courts, exercise facilities and a restaurant and bar make this a comfortable place to stay. Several shiny new bank buildings, a huge sports arena and convention center compliment the state capitol building complex to make an attractive downtown area. Camelback, South and newly named Piesowa Mountain, which was renamed from Squaw Mountain, to honor the first Native American woman soldier recently killed in Iraq dominate the skyline. It was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and has two eighteen hole golf courses on its grounds. The concierge had recommended a nearby Southwestern restaurant, called the a€?Tequila Grille.a€? It was a great find. We were headed for the very pricey a€?Fashion Island Mall.a€? The sun was shining and it was warm and in the 60a€™s out. We had decided to make a pilgrimage to Frank Llloyd Wrighta€™s a€?Taliesin West a€? this afternoon.
Low slung and angular, the house, in Wright tradition, seems like it is part of the surrounding land itself.
First year students are required to sleep in tents, for a year, to get the feel of the land and the wind and their relationship to the buildings. We had salmon and a glass or two of cabernet, as we chatted and became acquainted with a table-full of fellow travellers.Everyone seemed amiable enough and would prove to be good travelling companions over the course of the next week. Most of the town lies along both sides of Rte.#179 and extends a mile or so along the road. We packed our bags and put them outside the door.Then, we set off for a sunrise walk to the Canyona€™s rim. Every time, the canyon came into view an appreciative a€?ooha€? and a€?ahha€? rose from all of us. We drove across the bridge, admiring the chasm beneath us and the huge expanse of the damn itself.
The original Gouldings had come to Monument Valley in the early twentieth century and set up shop. Mary and I elected to wash off the trail dust and enjoyed a welcome shower before venturing over to the dining room. An all female city council and mayor had first appeared here in the late nineteenth century and done a good job for the town too.
We could see ranges of snow capped mountains along the skyline.Winter hangs long and departs slowly in these parts.
In brief, after an uplifting had raised the Colorado Plateau, from beneath an inland ocean to the 8,500 foot level, rivers and winds had eroded a huge portion of the upraised Colorado plateau, shaping it in the form of a Grand staircase, that runs from here, in Bryce Canyon at the 8,500 foot level, down through Utah, Arizona and Nevada and finally reaching the floor of the Grand Canyon at the 3,000 foot level.
A peak-roofed,wooden sided, two-story dining room, reception area and gift shop are flanked by several two story wooden lodges with guest rooms. We waved to several of our fellow travellers and then were seated by a€?Jonathana€? at a nice table for six. We crossed over the time zone into Pacific Standard Time and all set our watches back one hour to accomodate the change. The sidewalks were awash with families and hordes of young people, streaming up and down the strip.
We stood patiently, until the water falls in front erupted into the controlled fire of a small volcano. We walked back to the Alladdin and decided to catch some sun on their sixth floor pool deck. At the Alladin, we bought some quarters and fed the video poker machines for an hour, enjoying a glass of wine, as we threw our money away. You can save it to your OneDrive account so that you and your team can access it from multiple devices. That isn't too hard, but you can't tell by just looking at the chart that there is a dependency.
You can also enter the WBS number manually if you want to, as long as you enter the number as text. But, you can copy and paste the WBS, Task, and Task Lead, and that will give you a good start. This is done by including labor costs broken down by employee and the number of hours spent on each task.
Rapid business growth is so difficult that you need people who are completely committed and dedicated to the organizations vision and success. An outstanding portrayal by DiCaprio, you got the feeling that every speech he delivered reached every single Strattonite in the room. Given our tight time frame today, we were apprehensive about boarding our flight later this afternoon. Green Park areas, several restored 19th century homes and a general aura of clean prosperity greeted us as we drove around the bustling city.
They then start to sprout a€?arms.a€? The Cacti can grow to enormous size, live without water for up to seven years and exist for over 300 years.
Casual and comfortable, we had some Dos Equis beer and a plate of Que Sedias that were wonderful A basket of Mexican corn chips and several tangy dips were also great to the tatse. Sited on the brow of a desert bluff, (Taliesin is Welsh for shining brow) just below the crest of a nearby Mount McDowell, you can look out over 90 miles across the desert and seeTuscon,on a clear day.
Second year students have to design and build their own quarters.They also work the kitchens, to be familiar with what design elements should be incorporated in well designed kitchens. Kim Durham introduced herself as the Collette representative and gave us an overview of the week ahead of us.
We watched the desert scenery flash by, enjoying the various flora and the remarkable a€?green carpeta€? on the desert floor.The area had enjoyed bountiful rains this Winter and the desert was blooming with flora.
They were replaced by scrubby pinon trees , thin ponderosa pines and short, flat, prickly-pear cacti. Jewlery shops, art galleries and the entire array of tourist support structure lay waiting for us.We browsed several of the stores and bought some decent Indian jewelry. We were ascending onto the Colorado Plateau, at the 7,000 foot level, as we traversed the winding switchbacks. We saddled up and drove over to move into building #9, room 6904.The rooms were pine-panelled and basic, but clean and had all the amenties. Whole families took up tables for eight and ten and were busily going through the various psycho dramas that families endure at dinner time on vacation. We stopped for a brief time at the visitora€™s center.They have all manner of schema on the dama€™s functioning and its construction. They were big enough to have a knife and fork in their fins, as they wolfed down the floating cheesbits.
I think the hotel manager has to kick some butt here to get ready for the coming tourist season. The practice of Polygamy of course is the nettle that stuck in the rest of the countrya€™s craw. We left Rubya€™s and drove higher into Bryce Canyon.The snow pack was much deeper here, often several feet thick. There are vast coal deposits there, a source of much wealth for Navahos in the future, should they elect to expolit their most sacred site.
Each had on snow shoes, with iron pitons attached to the bottoms, for gripping the slick ice. Along the way, weirdly beautiful shapes of all sizes and colors had been created by the forces of erosion. Several sheep and cattle farms sit along the fast running Virgin River here, giving the area a visage of quiet prosperity. The traffic was building heavily as we entered Las Vegas.The place grows yearly by leaps and bounds, reinventing it self in the process. We walked down to the Venetian Casino and sat down for a light supper and a glass of wine in a small cafe, bordering the canal.
The sidewalks were thickly jammed in front of the Casino, with other griswalds waiting to watch the show which appears hourly.
At one point ,during the performance, giant rolls of crepe paper pass over the head of the entire audience. Some musician had finally securred his gig in Vegas, even if it was only playing on the pool deck of a casino.
A kindly businesman shared his cab with us, or we would have been waiting at the airport still.
The main functional difference is that the completion status of each task is displayed as a progress bar in the % Done column rather than changing the color of the bars in the chart area. For example, you could add a column for indicating the number of people associated with each task, the budgeted cost, actual cost, etc. This same technique will work for making a task start N days after another date (using a positive number_of_days). We were surprised to be able to sail through everything and make the a€?Ba€? sectiona€? of our Southwest flight. It was the beginning of a delightful caloric onslaught that would stretch out over the next 10 days and engulf us in some memorable tastes and aromas.
The entire area is set in the huge Sonorran Desert that stretches for 2,000 square miles all around us. Wright also held many soirees at the school, so that prospective students would become accustomed to socializing with wealthy patrons and learn how to secure commissions for work.The man thought of everything. Most of the rest of the gang had just arrived, in the last few hours, and looked pretty tired. The huge red sandstone expanses of Bell Rock, Cathedral Buttes, Snoopy and Thumb Peak all stood like vermillion lamp posts in the morning sun.
Then we settled into the a€?Canyon Breeze,a€? on their open back deck for lunch, joining Gerry and Muriel.
The vistas, back across the valley, were awesome, not comfortable for acrophobics on the narrow road. Cars were parked everywhere along the roadsways, while their occupants walked the rim path.
Gerry, Muiriel, Mary and I settled into a small booth and ordered up a martini, manhattan and glasses of wine to take off the chill. We rode back up to the lodge, then returned to our rooms for a half hour break, before we were to set off, in the landcruiser for Monument Valley, deep in the Navaho Reservation. Harry Goulding had taken pictures of the colorful Buttes and traveled to Hollywood, in the early 1930a€™s.He camped in director John Forda€™s office, until he got in to show him these great vistas. Next, we droped by the diner, where efficient and pleasant Navaho waitresses serves us some tasty a€?Navaho Tacos.a€? We much enjoyed them.
We chilled out, had a glass of Mondavi Cabernet and enjoyed a decent, if very slowly served meal. We browsed through Dennya€™s., had some good coffee and delicious maple fudge and then took pictures of ourselves standing in front of a large wooden bear and a replica of an old stage coach. You could but look and silently admire them as they sat there in quiet stillness and let the wind and the snow swirl through and across them.
And then, we came upon the first a€?window.a€? An enormous a€?windowa€? had been carved from the rock and looked out over a vast canyon of stone.
They were pine-panelled and pleasant enough, with views to the Virgin River just across the grassy entrance way. We watched a parade of gondoliers singing for their tourist fares, as the poled up and down the small canal. We entered the Luxor and retrieved our tickets for the evening performance of a€?Blue Man Group.a€? ($105 each) A tram took us back to the storied castles of the Excalibur and we then walked along the strip, past New York, the Monte Carlo and other palaces.
You find your self pulling madly on the crepe covers and throwing it onto the seats beneath you, in a mad frenzy.
We managed to get to our castle in time to change the clocks back for the Spring time change. The cacti, flowers and other flora were a delight to us, just coming from the frozen tundra of Buffalo. Early city leaders had built 130 miles of aqueducts to carry water in from the Salt and Colorado Rivers, in the nearby White Mountains, to nurture the city. We enjoyed our narrated tour through the small and nautically designed living and sleeping quarters, admirng the many unique architectural features that brand the man a genius. We could see the white expanse of snow covered Mt.Humphrey, far along the skyline in the San Francisco peaks. We enjoyed their rust-red beauty and took photos of ourselves with the rock formations as backdrops. In a brief time we reboarded the bus for the short hop over to the Bright Angel Lodge, sitting right on the Canyona€™ s Rim.


A pleasant waiter, from Providence, Rhode Island, served us up some decent River Trout, steaks and wondefrul deserts.
It was quiet as we walked.Only a few other brave souls were out and about in the morning cold. The Navaho Reservation stretches across 27,000 acres in parts of three states and encompasses mountain ranges, deserts and rivers. You first encounter the massive red sandstone pillars of a€?stagecoach butte, a€? a€?the two mittens,a€? a€?rabbits earsa€? and many more colorful stone monuments. Ford was so taken with the area, that he, John Wayne, Henry Fonda and Ward Bond filmed several classic Western epics in the valley. The Utah area, comprised formerly of native Paiutes and Utes tribes had first been scouted by the same Spanish priests, who recconoitered Arizona, Fathers Escalante and Dominguez in the late 1700a€™s.
You can but gaze intently and try to capture the images in your minds eye, as you enjoy the vast panaroma before you. In that the Emerald Grotto trail wound upwards for several hundred feet in elevation, we drew a by. We would love to visit here for a longer time and spend a few days wandering the hiking trails. We noticed the graceful, slim brown envelope of the new a€?Wynn Casino.a€? It would open in a few weeks.
We walked back along the boluevard to the Bellagio and stood waiting for the hourly a€?fountains dance.a€? In a small lake out front, computer controlled fountain jets orchestrate an hourly dance of fountain sprays, accompanied by classical music. For $19 each, we sat down to coffee and an enormous selection, of every type of food available, in the many stations in the huge buffet. We browsed through the pricey boutiques, admiring the casual opulence on display and wondering who actually buys all this stuff?
We put our bags in the check room and walked next door to the Paris Casino complex, where we walked a bit and then settled into sit and watch the throngs go by. Someone from Collette Tours was supposed to greet us at the airport and transport us to the Doubletree Hotel in nearby Scottsdale. We walked across the busy boulevard and headed through a subdivision towards Camelback Mountain in the distance. We had called the local tour company and arranged for a Phoenix city tour in the early afternoon. Paul Harvey and Glen Campbell still called these impressive haciendas and faux Roman Villas home. Row after row of shops, like Nieman-Marcus, Nordstroms, Gucci and dozens of other fashion names command your attention.
He had a feel for the land and thought of the house as a ship sailing on an ocean of desert.
A huge landcruiser, from a€?Tour America West,a€? was parked out in front of the hotel, presumably our a€?ridea€? for the next week. Snoopy,a€? and several other red sandstone creations, in the noon day sun.These are the real attractions of the area.
The bus took us out of the park and drove through Grand Canyon Village to the small airpark outside town.
The locals were hoping that the heavy Winter snows and ensuing Spring run off would put back another 50 feet of water into the huge Canyon.
They are varied in shape and a dusty vermilion in color.You can read images into them like you do when staring at the clouds. I can see even now, the a€?Dukea€? charging at the head of a cavalry troop, or riding long, lonely days with Jeff Chandler in a€?The Searchers.a€? Every time that I see these great epics again, I will think of Monument Valley and smile. Each yeah an entire hillside, with hundreds of actors, draws tens of thousands of tourists there to watch a four-day pageant, acting out in light and song, the history of the mormons.
Then, the Mormons came to this forbidding land in the mid 1800a€™s to develop it as a mining and agricultural complex, which it remains today. The casino was featuring a small impressionist collection of Moneta€™s and works by Sissler, Pissaro and Renoir in its gallery.
We sat for a time, at the end of the mall, waiting for the hourly performance of the a€?talking Roman staues.a€? They performed as they always do on the hour, never tiring of their own preprogrammed ribald comments and hearty laughter.
The Army Corps of Engineers had turned it into lush parkland and a golf course, much enhancing the area. Novel touches, like an acousitcally perfect recital hall, and reflected light everywhere kept our attention riveted to the house and the tour guide.
We walked along the rim, past the Bright Angel Lodge, Look Out Point Lodge and a few other early structures, some now undergoing rennovation, enjoying the solitude and the light effects as the sun hit the far canyon walls. A heavy magnezium content colored some sands green, iron dyed them red and sulfur, a yellow to give the far away desert floor a multi colored hue in its vast expanse. The Vermillion Bluffs, Echo Bluff and Navaho Montain all crowded our skyline and drew our appreciative glances. Carrot cake and coffee finished off this lovely repast, as we dined quietly, enjoying the momentary lull in the pace.
I remember well these scenes, from the many times I had watched the Western classics.And now, I was here amidst them.
The terrain is hilly from erosion and the roads earthen and rough, with no improvements.The spiky chapparal and sage didna€™t do much to hold down the dry, red dust that coated everything and everyone.
Kim put on a video of a€?October Sky.a€? We watched it during the ride back, our thoughts remembering what we had seen, and realizing that we would never this way walk again.
The viewers were into the window surprise, as we flashed through the dark and winding cocoon of bored rock. It was a mind shift for us, to go from the grandeur of erosive stone to the manufactured brilliance of the enormous casinos on the Las Vegas Strip. They had some interaction or other and, with lighting and sound effects, one of the huge ships sunk into the small lagoon. For $20 each, we wandered through the crowded gallery and admired several of Moneta€™s dusty mauve works of Cathedrals and seascapes.
It is actually interesting and enjoyable, if you let yourself get into the madcap performance. Luckily there were only five of us on the tour, so we could spread out and minimize the noisy and cramped seats. Huge forests, high mesas and mountain ranges, with suguaro cacti everywhere, are beautiful. Crowds of kids were headed to the Cinemas and more crowds of locals were off work for Good Friday.This is a very busy place, especially during the Summer months, when the outside temps can reach and stay in the 100-plus temperature ranges for weeks on end. We were only to be 33, so it promised not to be as crowded and claustriphobic as some we have experienced. One intrepid female was already sitting on a rock face meditating on the rising sun.Another couple read their bible as they looked out over the canyon. We ogled the Canyon from its eastern end and enjoyed the shadings and sculptings of the canyona€™s walls.High above us, a giant condor floated on the heated air currents rising from the canyon walls.
Finally, we arrived outside of Bryce Canyon and stopped at the very large and comfortable a€?Rubya€™s Complex.a€? Conference center, lodge, diner, gift store, provisioner and a€?old towna€? amusement center, Rubya€™s has everything. And then, we emerged into an even more fantastic lanscape.The Virgin River had carved the canyon into weirdly shaped formations. Interesting as it had once had been, we now found the whole show somewhat tacky and inconsequential, compared to the physical grandeur that we had experienced during this last week. We had coffee and muffins, in a small cafe, and then walked back into the casino area, to throw some more money into the video poker machines at Caesara€™s.
We ogled the Grand Cassas stretched out before us, in neat rows, like small movie sets in the desert.
Much of Arizona is federal land (54%) Another 17% of its land is on native American reservations.
We laughed, thinking of doing a a€?Chevy Chase.a€? (standing and looking out across the canyon for 30 seconds, then walking back to the bus) It was a scene from National Lampoona€™s vacation and we mention it often when we are touring.
The place does that to you, brings you back to the things elemental like nature and religion. For $10 each, we sat through a stomach lurching visual of an aerial ride over and through the Canyon.The photography was magnificent. When the bus came to a crossing, the lead cow stopped the ones behind it, until we crossed over the road. We arrived in Kanab (a€?willow basketa€? in Paiute) and stopped at a very prosperous a€?Dennya€™s Wigwam.a€? Besides the requisite jewlery, Dennya€™s carries an expensive line of Western clothing. Brigham Young took over the reigns of the religion, which exists and prospers today as the Church of the Latter Day Saints.
We wandered around the huge gift store and adjacent art gallery, admiring the western and native trinkets and baubles.Except for the pricey sculptings and paintings in the Gallery, things probably hadna€™t changed much from the time when beef jerky and oxen feed were the staples. The crowds were still building as we walked across one of the overhead crosswalks to the east side of the boulevard. I find that if you step back about 12 feet from these works, and catch them at about a 45 degree angle, they snap into sharp focus from their diffused frontal perspective.
I was tiring and had come down with some malady or other from breathing all the recycled air during the last week. Our hotel is located about 13 miles from the airport, so we settled back to enjoy the new surroundings. Mystic figiures like the a€?Kokopellia€? petroglyphs embellished the surfaces of these majestic rock faces.
The day was fast cooling, as we stood on the stone flagged terrace of the hotel and looked out ovet the canyon.The setting sun cast a thousand differing shadows, as it set behind the West Canyon walls. A narrator gave early history of the area and included Major Wesley Powela€™s expedtion exploits through the Canyon.
At one stop, an obliging Navaho, sitting on his horse, posed on a stone mesa and let us all photograph him. It was interesting to see how fast the transition had occured from native American to a€?westerna€? in only so few a number of miles. The sky was a bright, turquoise blue, and the sun was shining benignly on a wealthy land of milk and honey. The indians had learned to scrape away the dark, a€?desert varnish,a€? that is a form of algae, and leave inscribed figures on the rock faces, depicting animals, rain and other tribal mysteries. We talked with Jane, Michelle, Gerry and Muriel as we watched the lights go out all along the Canyon. It had been a good, albeit brief, visit to a phenomena that would be here for eons after we shucked this mortal coil. When the others rejoined us, they all spoke of the breathless beauty of the helicopter rides.
A small room, off the trading post, also lists all the films that had been shot in these environs, including the a€?Eiger Sanctiona€? and those crazy car commercials that show a vehicle airlifted onto huge pillars of stone.
After the gallery tour, we stopped at a small ice cream parlor, in Bellagio, and had coffee as we watched the swirl of people drift by. A small rail shuttle took us out to the Southwest terminals.They were jammed with Griswalds.
The temps were dropping into th 20a€™s tonight and we were all lightly dressed, so we ambled back into the Bright Angel and milled around with all the other Griswalds.
The bus dopped us off and we scurried to our various rooms, to pack for the morning departure, settle in and crash from the long daya€™s travel. Huge chunks of red sandstone, some bigger than the bus, lay along the roadside, testimory to the enormous rock falls that occurr here regularly. The colorful Dale Chihuli glass ceiling, in the Conservatory, is always worth a look as well. A former collection of huge citrus groves, and named for 19th century army general Winfield Scott, the area now bustles with 225,00 residents.
Through it all, Rosie filled us in on Navaho customs and even tried to teach us some of the language. We made our goodbyes, to our dinner companions, and walked back, through the inky and cool darkness, to our room.
We walked through the busy casino area, of the Alladdin and rode the elevator to our aerie, where we settled in to let the sand man whisk us away.
We settled in to read and pass the time, as the overloaded behemoth off-Lifted into the Nevada sky and flew eastward towards the frozen tundra of Western New York. It had snowed all day in Buffalo and we knew not what we faced.The cold and flu hit me hard, in the air, on the flight back. We made our case, got checked in and even had coupons, provided by the manager, for breakfast tomorrow morning.
Most of the residents of the reservation do what they can to survive economically, but I think they fair not well. It wouldna€™t take a large mind-blink to revert back hundred of years here, to a land and a time when the gods of thunder had walked the earth and cast large shadows amongst and above the few primitives who huddled here.



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