I’ve been doing a lot of travelling lately about the West Coast. After a few lovely trips up to Portland, OR, wherein I was finally able to see a lot more of the city than just the airport, I was welcome to tag along on a friend’s driving odyssey from Portland to Flagstaff, AZ for a Grand Canyon rafting trip. Despite plenty of warning that it was going to be far from a luxurious excursion, I insisted on being fully capable of handling a rough road trip and was thoroughly excited by the prospect of going on an adventure!
What an adventure it was… A nice split between day and night driving interrupted by catnaps and brief rest stops east through Oregon, down through Idaho and Utah and into Arizona. The lush mountains of the Northwest were a lovely backdrop for the early sunrise we saw in eastern Oregon, our timing was perfect to enjoy the pass through Boise without suffering through rush hour traffic, and the views over the hills of northern Utah at sunset–through scattered showers over the landscape–were breathtaking. We passed through Salt Lake City at night, and I’d been napping. At least I don’t feel like I missed much, as it was dark and I’ve seen plenty of night-lit cities over the course of my life. I’d love to see it during the daytime at some point, though.
The two nights spent on the road were incredible. I’ve never seen so many stars in the sky in my life! It was absolutely splendid, and I found the Big Dipper in the night sky for the first time. The Milky Way was also visible and was quite a sight. My friend assured me that he’d be seeing even more stars in the sky during the rafting trip, and I was in complete awe at the thought of there being still more stars to see! This adventure was simply rife with sensory experiences that have left a lasting impression on me and will never be forgotten.
Expecting to be met with fairly dull desert in Arizona, I was thoroughly astonished by the views as we crossed the border and drove down to Flagstaff. The canyons, hills, and immense wide open expanses were unbelievably beautiful. I was surprised by the amount of vegetation there actually was, and after changing out of a polyester satin shirt and borrowing my friend’s t-shirt for a while, I wasn’t the least bit bothered by the heat as we crossed about 80 miles or so of sweeping land.
Flagstaff is a beautiful little city with a quaint airport I am currently killing time in, waiting to fly standby into Phoenix to connect home to San Fran. The prospect of another adventure for the return trip in a couple of weeks when I conveniently have a few days off again–this time along a different route via Las Vegas–will give me something to look forward to as I digest all the divine events of this trip.
Living life is good. Very good.