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Losing your car keys can be very frustrating, so it makes sense to keep them somewhere safe… Well, what can be safer than buckling them up? 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. Common reasons for the CHECK ENGINE light to come on include a loose gas cap, fouled spark plugs, dirty fuel injectors, the failure of an engine sensor such as the oxygen sensor, throttle position sensor or manifold absolute pressure sensor, or a problem in an emissions control system or device such as the EGR valve or catalytic converter. If a warning light says OIL or you see a little icon of an oil can, DO NOT ignore this warning light. The oil pressure warning light comes on when oil pressure drops below a minimum threshold (the exact pressure will vary from one vehicle to another). The underlying cause of a low oil pressure warning light is usually a low oil level in the engine's crankcase.
Other causes of an low oil pressure warning light include a worn oil pump or a faulty oil pressure sending unit.
For more information about your engine's lubrication system and causes of low oil pressure, Click or Tap Here. A TEMP warning light or an icon of a thermometer is another warning lamp that you should NOT ignore. If you see a coolant leak, you may be able to temporarily stop the leak by adding a can of cooling system sealer to the radiator. For more information about your cooling system and causes of a temperature warning light, Click or Tap Here. The "GEN" or "ALT" warning light, or an icon of a battery usually means trouble (on some vehicles, a battery icon may illuminate if there is a charging system problem). This warning light comes on when the charging system is NOT producing enough current or voltage to meet your vehicle's electrical needs. If the belt appears to be intact and is turning the alternator, start the engine, and turn on the headlights. For more information about the operation of the charging system and charging diagnosis, Click or Tap Here. If the Brake Warning light remains on all the time, the problem may be a low fluid level in the master brake cylinder reservoir. NOTE: If the Brake Warning light is also on, it may indicate a serious hydraulic problem with the brake system. This is a warning that you have a lamp out: a headlight, taillight, stop light or turn signal indicator. Check all the lights on your vehicle when it is safe to do so (not in the middle of the highway at night!), and replace any bulbs that have burned out. A warning light that looks like this or says SRS should NEVER come on unless there is a fault in your vehicle's air bag system (supplemental restraint system or SRS). Many late model vehicles have an oil change reminder light that comes on when the engine computer estimates the oil needs to be changed. Many service reminder lights have a RESET button that allows you to turn off the light and reset the interval period. Many vehicles have their own unique warning lights or icons to alert you when something is wrong. Choosing a pushchair for your new baby can be a headache! With so many out there how do you know which to choose?
We’ve checked out some of the best pushchairs available, testing some of them ourselves! If you’re looking for a sleek, compact, light stroller, look no further than the Superlite. Weighing in at around 6kgs, the Superlite is an easy-to-use stroller with the added bonus of style! The chunky rear wheels with pneumatic tyres can cope with the mudiest of paths, whilst its swivelling front wheels give excellent manoeuvrability in the street. Folding and unfolding is possible with just one hand- perfect for when you can’t put your littly down while collapsing your pushchair.
The large wheels at the back and small wheels at the front, make the Superlite an easy push when out and about.
The shopping compartment underneath, gives ample space for groceries, and the rain-cover comes packed in a funky bag so you don’t have to store it underneath like most buggies. The lightness of this pushchair does mean you can’t put bags on the back of it without fear of it tipping, a small negative outweighed by all the positives this stroller has to offer. If you’re looking to buy a buggy that will help you loose those baby pounds, looks good, is stylish, then look no further than the tried and tested Maclaren GTLX. We must say, that in over 20 years of experience with buggies, none have blown us away quite like the GTLX!
The stylish design is both comfortable and practical and comes with a wonderful range of accessories to make travelling out and about with your littly, easy! With headlights fitted for safety visibility, this buggy is an all weather, all day stroller, perfect for getting out and about.
Nothing ugly about this beauty as a single buggy- A good looking pushchair that will last for years to come, if your’e prepared to pay the price! We bought this buggy knowing we would hopefully be having another baby pretty soon after, and happily enough our next baby was born the day before Betsy’s first birthday! This pushchair is quite bulky and heavy, but it takes a heavy load and feels sturdy and safe.
The only problem with the Phil & Teds is reacurring punctures which when out and about isn’t great! The Phil and Teds is a sound investment- yes, it’s a little more expensive than rival buggies, but it’s a brilliant double buggy!
This super practical pushchair is ultra compact and easy to fold, making it perfect for trips out and about.
The front wheels can be fixed into straight or swivel mode, and the seat can be reclined one handed! Unlike other pushchairs, the Maxi-cosy Mura seems to have an age limit due to it’s size, meaning the expensive is not worth it! The seat unit has just been uncomfortable and not to his liking right from the beginning and I wondered if he was too wee for it, so left it a while until he was bigger.
It been used a handful of times and now he’s uncomfortable in it as he’s too big for it! I’m now faced with the decision if I want another baby to keep it, or get a double buggy as Caleb needs a new one now! It converts to a stylish forward facing pushchair for a toddler, so no added costs when baby has grown! Quite simply a fabulous value lightweight package including all the accessories you’ll need. Available in a selection of funky colours this lightweight and comfortable pushchair is the top of the tots when it comes to making a fashion statement.
Used by the rich and famous, the Bugaboo range has many claims to fame in his purchase history, such as Madonna, Gwyneth Paltrow and hubby Chris Martin. This funky fashion accessory for todays ‘yummy mummy’ can leave one a little red faced when trying to fold it up to get into the car!
A funky 3-wheeler which offers a unique automatic unfolding mechanism and a flexible seat unit which allows your baby to face either forwards or towards you.
Use 3 wheeler pushchair alone or add the Dreami carry cot (sold separately) to form a pram, or the Maxi-Cosi® Cabrio infant carrier car seat (sold separately) to form a travel system. 3 recline positions in forward-facing mode; 2 recline positions in rearward-facing mode Lockable.
Nothing ugly about the Buzz 3, a funky buggy that looks good and performs well if you can afford the price tag! Use 4 wheeler pushchair alone or add the Cabrio infant carrier car seat (included) to form a travel system. This  fab, lightweight buggy is easy to use and fold, making it the perfect partner for public transport. The Petite Star Njoy Bubble is the first reversible stroller meaning you and your baby can see eachother, and when they want to have a look out at the world front facing – they can do that too!
We would suggest that you first verify that the relay is properly functional by testing it or just replace it. If all of this tests OK, replace the relay.  If you still have the odd functioning, additional diagnotics will be needed for the ECU and climate control unit (as noted above).
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 want something practical, safe and comfortable but you want it to look good too at a good price, something that’s not going to use up all of your new baby fund! The terrain was bumpy, but the Microlite Superlite took it well-Betsy remained comfortable and happy, and the stearing was easy and light. The lightness makes putting into the boot of the car or understairs cupboard an easy task without braking your back! The GTLX can be used from birth so you can start your ‘Baby Steps’ routine as soon as you feel fit enough and with the reversible seat, baby can face you or take in the world. The  carry cot was fantastic and he was in it right up until he was 10 months and the car seat was great too.
The 3D offers a full lie flat position with a soft liner allowing face to face contact, something a lot of pushchairs these days don’t allow. Like all Bugaboo products, the Gecko is safe, comfortable and designed to adapt to you and your child’s needs in almost any environment or climate. It takes a little getting used to with the hood and raincover, but pretty straightforwad and a pretty great design!
If a properly working relay does not change anything, there may be a fault in the ECU circuit or the signals from the climate control unit, to the ECU. 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 relay is energized (turned-on) by the ECU (engine Control Unit) grounding the circuit and allowing current to then flow through the relay’s coil.
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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