You will not believe us
Laura & Alan Grayson
Sat 7 Jun 2008 15:17
Well I have been especially slack since we left Singapore and have not gotten around to the rest of the trip. Lets just say it was wonderful and leave it at that. I had a great time catching up with Dave and Sonya Morgan in Sydney. It's always great to catch up with your mates, especially when you are on the other side of the world.
We had a marvelous time in NZ especially at Lee and Silke's wedding. That was a great day and weekend and it was so special being a part of it all. Thanks Lee and Silke.
I know that's a really short 3 lines for a months worth of traveling but I am basically a slack bugger.
I had some drama (once again) coming into LAX. I apparently needed a travel permit, Well I didn't but this numbnuts said I did, so we spent a small amount of time (2hrs) convincing this numbnuts that we could in fact come back into the states. Hassle solved but we decided to get this document before leaving to prevent this from happening, This was the next drama. It seems it take about a year before you get this silly thing, luckily for us we had people who knew people and we managed to get it in 2 months. A big thank you goes out to Buffy for that one. So there we were sitting in Kerrville waiting, well I'm not that good at that so the plans got drawn up as to what we were going to do. We had already decided that in June 2009 we were going to come back to the states and get back to work so we just bought that forward and figured we might as well get into it now. That was the easy part. The big question is WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO???
Well we settled on buying an RV Park and the first one that tooted our horn was in Alaska. Could we have possibly thought of something so far out of left field. I mean Caribbean to Alaska come on. But Laura agreed so we are checking it out. Now it is a long way to Alaska for just one Park so we started looking at places along the way. We found a lot to look at so now it was a case of how do we do this. We have a cat in Venezuela that we could just not forget not to mention a boat sitting in the water. Well at this stage in the planning I still did not have my travel documents so I packed Laura off to get the cat and check on the boat and make sure it was all shipshape. We were also looking at purchasing a small RV so we could travel to all these Parks and have somewhere to live and look after the cat.Well would you know it the price of gas starts going thru the roof, this starts reducing the options a bit. It is surprising just how many vehicles are V8 in the states. We found this great little 22 ft VW eurovan with a Winnebago body on it which only has a V6 so we snapped this deal up and we love it, of course we are used to living in small places now. We bought this in Tucson Arizona 2 days before Laura left for Venezuela so we had a fast drive thru to Houston to drop Laura off at the airport. We just made it with a couple of hours to spare. On the way back from Tucson we stopped in at the mom in Law's to check emails and found out my travel docs had turned up. How about that for timing. Now that we could leave we decided not too. Probably won't even use the damn thing now!!
Once Laura came back with the cat we spent about 2 weeks getting our life back together and then we left on our big adventure.
Well we had to wait for the GPS that Laura insisted that we have. Boy I hate it when I have to buy new toys. This was a next day air package that was supposed to arrive at 10.30 am but which arrived at 7.00pm. We were planning on leaving as soon as this turned up so it put us quite a few hrs behind. We had made a time to see the first camp at noon the next day. It was in New Mexico, a casual 15hr drive. It would have been casual except for the man in the brown UPS jacket and it would have been casual except for the huge thunder storm. To cap it all off the camp was Shiite!! Just out of Taos, New Mexico we stopped for the night at a picnic area and went for a bike ride. I saw my first Horn Toad, They are about as good looking as John Hickman on a bad beard day! I won't bore you all with all the camps we have visited but I will bore you about the national parks in Utah. I just want you to realize that Utah has great national parks, the rest of the state you can leave to the Mormons and believe me they can have it. The place is full of nothing it puts the GABBA ( Great Australian Bugger All) to shame. The National Parks though are SPECTACULAR. First stop Zion National Park. One long Canyon on a smaller scale to the Grand Canyon. We took a bus up to the end of the Canyon and biked back down. A truly wonderful easy downhill ride amongst some spectacular scenery.
Bryce Canyon National park was next. This place is full of HooDoo's. Limestone formations that have been eroded over time, very cool. We took the shuttle bus up to the end of the rim Trail and walked back, about a 4 mile walk. The view is different every time you turn the corner. Apparently there was a Mormon farmer who had a farm down at the bottom of the canyon. When asked about how it was to live there his reply was " it's a hell of a place to find a cow". I can believe it. We took a walk down into the HooDoo's along the Navajo Trail. Awesome. There were a lot of trees growing down there which were so straight you could have put a straight edge up to them and not seen any gaps. And lost!!! man could you have gotten lost down there, Crooked trails down there with the only view being up.
Next stop Arches Nation Park, after a 6 hr drive thru absolutely nothing, then all of a sudden you are right up against some towering rock faces and right beside the mighty Colorado River. This park is filled with "FIN" formations of limestone. Apparently a big salt lake formed over millions of years which then got covered but soil and rock then as this layer of rock eroded away it left parallel vertical cracks. As water seeped thru into the salt layer ( 5 miles deep) and washed away a fair amount of the salt the rock above collapsed leaving these "Fins" of rock. Then over the years erosion carved out the inside of these Fins creating the most amazing Arches. Isn't Mother Nature a wonderful thing. We spent a day driving thru this park " Just agog" in wonder at how these things come about and how small we really are. Well it has now been 11 days and we have been to 3 national Parks, gone thru 7 states, seen 6 different Campgrounds. Nobody said we were slouches. The reason it has been so fast is because we are heading to Alaska and the season is so short and time is a wastin. See you all in Alaska.