Las Vegas to Tuba City
We woke up to Louis’s birthday, Tuesday April 17th, and Selma made him breakfast, sang Happy Birthday and gave him a cake she had baked the night before. Not. It was a new day on the road, and we didn’t want to spend too much time in the crappy motel room.
Leaving Las Vegas - by being greeted with a welcome
We left the motel in Las Vegas around 10:30 and drove up towards the top of the Strip to get a picture of the famous “Welcome to Las Vegas” sign (which Kitty made us miss as we entered the city). Then it was time to get the hell out of dodge. We stocked up on water and other essentials right outside city central of Vegas and headed east. After about one hour of driving we hit a standstill in traffic. We just had to sit still and wait and eventually the traffic got going at a snails phase. We made the decision to get off at the next stop to wait for the traffic to get going and for us to fuel up the car. When we got going again, it turned out that there had been some sort of problem with a truck. It had now been moved out to the side of the road and was surrounded by cops. “Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do when they come for you…”. This song was to get an even more high pitched version the next day.
Brad breaking the rules at the Hoover Dam
Next on our itinerary was a visit to the Hover Dam. Nice weather and a huge dam, nothing more to say. Selma did get a picture of a Hog (biker) just before we left. Leaving the Hover Dam, we entered the state of Arizona. This part of the trip feels like driving through the set of an old western movie. Often when you see these kind of movies, you go; “This is sooooo fake, it must be inside a studio”. Well, most often you would be right, but wow! Some of the stuff we got to see for real looked fake! It seemed like someone had painted the sky, and they had put clouds where there shouldn’t be any. Hopefully some of the pictures will help illustrate what we saw.
Posing in front of a Joshua tree
A stop next to a Joshua three was a must. Some Grill Bill shots was taken by the eminent photographer Selma. We also had to take a picture of us and the Silver Foxy Lady, our vessel for this journey of the trip. Then there where more hours on the road and a rush to get to the Grand Canyon before it closed . . . for the night that is. It might be Grand, but in the dark of night it’s just another hole in the ground. We raced towards the Canyon with the sun going down in the west. So there we where and got to see the canyon go red, as the sun set, and this magnificent visual megastucture slowly vanish before our eyes.
Brad at the Grand Canyon
We drove a little further down the road, to get another look and just as we came over a small hilltop Louis saw the turnoff to another lookout point. He hit the brakes, and just as he did, he noticed that the car we just met on the road was a police car. The Cop probably saw Louis break and hit his own breaks. But when he saw that we where heading in towards the lookout point, he decided not to take up the pursuit. After this little stop, we started the drive towards Tuba City, with only one little stargazing session.
We had planned to spend two days on the way from Las Vegas to Grand Junction, but hadn’t decided on where to stop for the night. We hoped to be able to find some lodging along the way. Well, as we were driving through the dark, we realized that we’d reached a part of the US where we could go for miles and miles without seeing anything but desert plains (or pure darkness, in our case).
Big relief as this sign was popping out of the dark!
As we finally reached Tuba City, we were greeted by three horses, walking around freely around a deserted gas station. We found what we feared was the only motel in town, with the “no vacancy” sign blinking, and we thought we where shit out of luck. Louis was ready for a night under the stars (safely locked in the car, mind you). But after a little searching we found the Greyhills Inn. It turns out that it is a schools dormitory. We stayed in one part of the building and the rest was used for a school. The shower and WC was in a room down the hall, but other than that the stay was a good one. A wi-fi router was placed in the lobby, but the signals didn’t reach all the way to our room - so Selma spent a few hours sitting in a staircase next to the locked-up lobby (the clerk left at 11pm, locking the doors as she left), posting to the blog and uploading photos.
Driving through the dark, in an environment you don’t know, is strange. You imagine there are trees all around, and hills and valleys, just like in Norway. But this couldn’t be further from the truth. When we woke up in the morning, we found ourself on the middle of the prairie. Tuba City is the Navajo Indian Reservation’s largest community, and most of the residents are Navajo. And the surroundings are like taken from any western movie, with miles and miles of dry ground, horses strolling around - and tumbleweed crossing the street in front of us. Weird. And quite an experience!
Waking up in Tuba City