Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Enjoying Utah and Rockin Salt Lake City

Last night I slept with the window open and it was so nice to feel the cool air this morning. It was a mild 70 degrees at 8am, but it started rising quickly. It was over 100 degrees by 10:00.

I could have taken I-15, but it looked like such a straight shot and I had lots of time today, so I decided to take a less direct route. I turned on I-70 and I’m so glad I did.

The first place I saw a brown sign was some kind of historic fort. I didn’t know what to expect, so I took the detour. The sign said it was only a mile. It was a fort. Nothing too exciting. I turned around and got back on the highway.

The next brown sign was for the Fremont Indian National Park. And that was well worth the detour. The craggy rocks were such pretty colors. I’m running out of words to describe the feelings I got from seeing the beauteous nature. But I took some pictures, so if you think of some words, you can leave them in the comments below. 

I also took a little detour on a dirt road toward Castle Rock Campground. It was just staggeringly awesome.

I’m not sure if camping would be the way to go. I dont’ know how long the awesomeness of the beauty would last with nothing to do. Without lakes or something to swim in, I may lose interest pretty quickly. But who knows? It’s pretty fantastic.

I’m always disappointed in the videos. They just don’t capture the majesty and grandeur of the sights I’m shooting. Sometimes I look at them afterward and think, “Why was I so impressed by this?” I hope as you watch the videos you get a feeling for what I’m seeing.

So then we got back on I-70 and drove more. Once we got out of the Fish Lake National Forest, the scenery was back to the typical (but still jaw-droppingly gorgeous) mountains I’ve been seeing for the past weeks.

I stopped when I saw a brown sign pointing toward Yuba National Park. Fortunately, it wasn’t a long drive, because it was sort of a bust. It was flat and dry and hot and boring and the lake was mostly dried up.

I had the urge to stop for coffee, so I went to a Starbucks drive through in Draper, Utah. The woman at the drive-thru window saw River watching our transaction from the passenger seat and she asked if he wanted a Pupacino. I asked what that was and she said, “it’s just whipped cream, but they love it.”  I said OK. And when she brought my coffee she also had an overturned lid with some whipped cream piled on it. There was no one behind me in line, so I stayed there and let her watch him eat it. He gobbled it up and we laughed. “You were right, he loved it!” I said. As we drove away, I thought, I hope he doesn’t get diarrhea now.  (he didn’t)

We drove past Salt Lake City and checked into Motel 6 in Ogden, Utah. I did this to shorten tomorrow’s drive to Boise. As it is, it’s 4 1/2 hours. Driving from Salt Lake City would have been over 5 hours. 

So I had about an hour and a half to chill, shower and give River a walk before taking off for Salt Lake City. I was sweating the whole ride there, even with the air conditioner on. 

We got to the Sugar Space and met Brittany who runs the place. It is more of a theatrical space than a typical dance or exercise studio. She showed me around and as she was about to show me the lighting options I could choose for class, she disappeared. She came back a few minutes later saying that someone has just smashed the window out of her car and taken her purse, in which she had about $1000 of cash!  What a terrible thing. I didn’t know what to say. I only hope the person who stole that money gets what they deserve.

Seven people showed up to dance with us. Two of them came only because they wanted to dance to some Rock & Roll and had never even heard of Nia. There was a guy in class, too. Renee Podunovich is a local teacher and she brought her partner; a male, who was interested in the whole male teacher and rock music thing.

We had a rockin good time and I think we have a couple of new Nia fans in Salt Lake City. After class I was closing up the space as Brittany had shown me, and as I was about to lock the front door, I saw that she was still outside talking with the police. 

I have to say, that sort of left a bad taste in my mouth. I guess it could happen anywhere, but it always surprises me that people actually do stuff like that.

On the drive home, River was looking weary. I got the feeling he was getting tired of the heat (as was I). I had been making a strong effort to make sure he was happy and comfortable the whole trip, but there’s only so much I can do about the heat.

By the time we got back to Ogden, the sun had set and it was much cooler, so I took him to a grass park and we ran and played and he rolled in the grass. He seemed to be spent, but it was so nice to sit there, we just hung out there until the sprinklers came on and forced us to run back to the car.

That seemed to perk him up.

I only have two more stops, and two more classes before we’re home.


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