Monday, August 20, 2007

Expedition Report

My apologies, but this will be visually unexciting, just a quick hello. After two days visiting with my mother before she flew back to Reno, and two nearly catatonic days*, I am just now getting my act back together. I do promise photographs very, very soon... I am now (thanks, Mom) the proud owner of a new Canon PowerShot, but have temporarily misplaced the manual so I still have to figure out how to get the photographs from there to here.

Off-hand, the incredible things I saw include South Dakota (all of it); Powell's City of Books (and, as promised, I was NOT disappointed. That place is a dream come true); sunset over the Great Salt Lake; Churchill Downs (the big question now being, should I buy the Thoroughbred before or after I build my sailboat?); the Columbia River Gorge (aka a living Maxfield Parrish painting); the site of the original Little House on the Prairie; and a forest fire I apparently drove through, although I didn't see any actual flames, only one thick column of smoke coming up from the brush twenty feet off the highway, at which point I thought, Man, they were serious when they put out those "No Stopping Next 10 Miles" and "Caution Fire Ahead" signs, and decided not to actually get out of the car and shoot some close-ups. Sorry. I have some general shots to share, though.

That's just the beginning of the list.

I visited with a number of incredible people, including one very special person from far away, one lovely couple who made me fantastic tomato sandwiches, and friends who graciously housed my mother and me in Colorado. All of the visits were far too short.

I came home with a notebook full of receipts, one magnet, one tin lunch pail and a corncob doll (just like Laura's), a handful of coasters, three new books (yes, I showed remarkable restraint), a pile of postcards, a number of pressed pennies, two Harley-Davidson t-shirts for my husband, two charms for my bracelet, two coffee mugs (only the coolest coffee mugs ever), three boxes of my grandmother's things, and her sewing machine, which I would hesitate to even touch if I didn't know she'd be right there saying, "I know you can do it, Sweet Thing."

Oh, and a hotel ice bucket that found its way into my ice cooler. It wasn't me, that I can swear to you.

p.s. Did I mention that the bride looked absolutely stunning?

p.p.s. And it was actually 7100 miles all together. And I learned that one can average 50 mph over a day in West Virginia and Kentucky, but 73 mph over a day in South Dakota, Wyoming and Montana, rest stops included.

* I am not exaggerating about the catatonia; I thought I had another weird virus, a peril of travelers, you know, but now I realize it was either just plain exhaustion or altitude sickness from traversing three mountain ranges five times in two weeks, which would explain a lot of strange symptoms I had during the trip


Laurie aka Hailey said...

Welcome home! Once you have recovered we will need to get together!

carolyn said...

Welcome back that was one hell of a long drive! Altitude sickness is horrible living at sea level here in the Fens I'm really not that good at high altitude.
Looking forward to hearing / seeing more of your trip.

Felicia said...

What a wonderful adventure :)

Crashdummie said...

hey weebee al! we want pics!!!

Candace said...

Tomato sandwiches!!! I thought it was just me!!!! Sounds like quite the trip.


tinker said...

Welcome back! That was quite a drive - on our recent roadtrip, we only did 1500 miles and I know how exhausting that was - so I can only imagine how you must be feeling - probably like you're still behind the wheel.

Can't wait to see photos when you get your landlegs back - it sounds like quite an adventure. And Corey? You met Corey? Oh wow!

Merisi said...

Oh, dear, my heartfelt empathy for going through those two days of complete exhaustion. Altitude sickness (and any motion sickness at that) is really hard on our body.
I am looking forward to your report and photos, escpecially Laura's place.

CaBaCuRl said...

What an eventful time you've had...the good AND the bad. Ugly we can do without! Looking forward to reading and seeing more when you are able to let us know more.

Merisi said...

I hope you are fine and had a good Labor Day weekend, down by the bay! :-)
Here it's raining, 48 F - a very good day to stay at the desk. *grin*

Merisi said...

I hope you are fine and had a good Labor Day weekend, down by the bay! :-)
Here it's raining, 48 F - a very good day to stay at the desk. *grin*

Crashdummie said...

hey Al, sowwie but i dont have ur mailadress :(

drop me a line at and I'll send u the conatctinfo... good luck :)

paintandink said...

A belated thank you, everyone for the welcomes... I am just now getting back into my blog-reading routines, so I promise to return the visit very soon.