driving the southwest, backwards

We’re running about a half day ahead of schedule thanks to Karen Jean’s hotel donation Thursday night and our failure to reserve camping in Bryce Canyon tonight. We are able to drive till we crash when all we have to do is check in and brush our teeth. We’re in Salt Lake City, Utah at a Motel 6, and finally able to update on our last 3 days in the southwest.

Let’s go backwards. Utah held the first snow capped mountains Benjamin had ever seen. As we approached it, I told him how it looked like the little mountain across the street from my house in Oro Valley and his eyes got big. “That’s a little mountain!?” I wish we had the time for a detour to the Rocky Mountains of Colorado to show what a real mountain pressence feels like.

Arizona did me proud. We camped at the Grand Canyon National Park Friday night and spent the first part of Saturday with our jaws dragging on the ground. I forgot how breathtaking it was. We drove through the painted desert and part of Glen Canyon on the way out of Arizona. There was scarcely a souvenir stand for nearly the whole drive to Utah. It was so moving and poetic to have the greys, the pinks, the golds, the blues, and the REDS (especially the reds) all to myself. Just the land expressing itself and its savoring witness moving along its body like the sunlight.

New Mexico flew by in a flurry of “trying to catch up” since we left so late Thursday. I may change my mind about it later when we go through it again, but right now New Mexico just feels like an appetizer for the beauty-buffet that lies in Arizona.

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