So the next day....
We left Lincoln City and drove along the Coast Highway, enjoying the amazing views. Some of them were a little scary! We stopped to show the kids The Devils Punchbowl, and I got some fudge for the family back home at the cutest little treat and coffee shop.
On we went to Eureka!
Sweet Sarah Hicks had invited us to stay at her place, and it was just lovely! We had dinner at a Mexican restaurant before heading over to her place. Laura, Andrew and Sarah really did have a nice time, although they look very serious in this picture....
Sarah has a really nice house, that is perfectly preserved mid-century modern. She is doing some wonderful projects in the home that she is sharing with her girls. What a beautiful young woman she is. The past year has been so hard for them after losing Aaron, but they are forging ahead like heroes.
We drove down from Eureka through the redwood forest, where we were all amazed at the size of these amazing trees!
After that, the heat started to catch up. We went from Eureka to Fresno, on Saturday, so we just kept moving. Another heat wave was starting to build, so that was also a consideration. We stayed overnight in Fresno, and on the way in we drove through miles and miles of farmland! So much food! We also got to attend mass in a beautiful, but really warm, Church.
Sunday we headed east again. We arrived in the Vegas area, and since it was still early we decided to head over to the Hoover dam which is nearby. It is an amazing thing to look at! The weather was super hot. It was around 113 while we were there, so we weren't feeling very adventurous. We walked down from the parking lot and took lots of pictures. Sadly, the Colorado river was pretty hard to find. Lake Mead, the lake behind the dam, is really low. The lowest it has been for a long time. I am now seeing lots of news about it.
We arrived in Las Vegas after the dam. We drove down the strip and that was really interesting. So many of the places that I have heard about. Some really cool buildings and some not-so-cool. We got to our hotel, The Grand, and when we walked in we discovered that we were in the casino, and I discovered that smoking is still allowed in public spaces in Nevada. Yuck.
The Grand is nice though, and the rooms were clean and comfortable. The food from the little cafe/bar downstairs wasn't bad at all! The kids went to the pool and we turned in early because we were heading out super early to beat the heat.
We left Las Vegas for Roswell, New Mexico, and most of our drive was in Arizona. There is some really beautiful country there! We drove and took pictures out the windows. It was just too hot to get out and see very much. We did stop at the Petrified Forest National Park and what a treasure that place is! What a gift to see all the trees that have turned to stone lying right out where you can touch them. The Painted Desert is so beautiful, and we got to see the petroglyphs at "Newspaper Rock". Wow. So cool to see these pictures that were carved onto the rocks thousands of years ago!
We drove on to Roswell, through a LOT of very lush farmland. We saw deer and antelope and flocks of sheep. We found our hotel and it was pretty good. Roswell is pretty run down and that's understandable for a place whose claim to fame is vintage aliens. I guess it probably gets all dressed up for festivals a couple of times a year. It is an interesting place though.
We left Roswell after Andrew took the van to have the tires balanced and rotated. That car served us very well! We were safe and comfortable, and we brought back loads of stuff!! We got into Texas and enjoyed the familiar territory and getting closer to the Cooke home. We drove through lots of East Texas towns and saw some cool sights like a mural in Brady, Texas.
|One Hour Left!|
We got home around 7:30 and were greeted by a very excited Tucker!! He was so happy to have his family back!
We unpacked the van, started loads of laundry, and I packed my car. It was full!
I left the next morning at 7:30 because I had a long two days of driving ahead of me. I made it to Nashville and stayed in the last hotel for awhile!! It was nice, but I missed my "roomies". I got home on Thursday evening around 8:30. It was so good to see Tim and the boys! I missed them so much!
This has been a truly grand adventure, and I want to keep on traveling. It is so much fun to hit the road and see what is to be seen in God's creation.
Next time I will have a new travel buddy!