Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Road Trip 2018--Day 3 (Moab, Monument Valley, and Flagstaff)

Bonjour, mes amis! My pictures are uploading to Dropbox on the "fast" and free internet at LaQuinta Inn of Flagstaff. I celebrated my arrival in this artsy town surrounded by trees, wildflowers, and art galleries by picking up some toiletries at Walmart and dining at the Olive Garden with Mom because she never gets to go to Olive Garden in Grand Junction. (I guess the wait is too long.) Anyway, I was feeling too lazy to actually drive over to the other side of town to soak-up local color in the artsy part of Flagstaff. Since we're driving to San Diego tomorrow, I may need to plan on revisiting Flagstaff to get my real fix later this summer. Sadness.

Flagstaff, AZ

I don't know what is happening with Ernie, my bizarro dog. He's currently in my dad's care in Grand Junction. The day didn't start off the best. In fact, since he escaped the yard on Sunday, my dad tried to tie him to something in the backyard for a brief period, but Ernie escaped his harness. So, it looks like Dad and Ernie will be attached at the hip until we get home. I just hope both survive.

Speaking of surviving, I'm going to try to actually get up at 8 a.m. tomorrow (or, actually, today) so I can get in on the free LQ breakfast. Pretty tough since I'm currently up binging on Simply Nailogical videos on Youtube.

We drove into Flagstaff on, I believe 89 South, transitioned to Route 66 (even though Mom insisted it wasn't Route 66,) and followed a circuitous route through town and Northern Arizona University's campus. Our hotel is actually right by the campus. I'm having that weird agita I experience whenever I'm near an institution of higher learning. I think my previous experiences have traumatized me. Anyway, I really recommend this area. We had plenty of hotel chains to choose from, the buildings are new or recently renovated and all are within walking distance of several restaurants. (I was able to order two glasses of wine without worrying about driving back. Yes!)

Kayenta, AZ

Mom claimed Kayenta has "nice" places to eat. Compared to Blandon, UT, it was luxurious--Taco Bell, Burger King, McDonald's . . . . or the Blue Coffee Pot. We went to the Blue Coffee Pot. On the front windows, locals posted flyers advertising "new" tires for sale at $150 each and a missing person.

Inside, we saw a cafeteria-like grouping of roundtables with locals from the Rez, paper placemats, paper napkins, a "salad bar" with a large bowl of iceberg-based salad mix and "Italian" dressing. We ordered Navajo tacos. If you have never experienced a Navajo taco, it's basically fry bread covered in (hopefully) reheated Hormel chili, a dollop of green chili, diced tomatoes, grated cheddar, diced yellow onions and iceberg lettuce. What's up with all this iceberg lettuce, people? My mom's take on the experience, "I think I could make that." Mine? "Was yours hot?"

Moab, Blandon, and More Blandon, UT

Not much happening in Moab or Blandon. Arches is great, but we didn't have time to go, so we drove along and Mom pouted.