Monday, August 26, 2013

12th day away from home (August 21st, 2013)

Well, right now and as you can see from my present header, we are in Yellowstone National Park.  We came across this lovely Mama Bison and her Calf not ten minutes into the park.  It was a lovely sight but no I didn't get out of the car to take that photo.  There was no traffic behind us, I used the zoom on my camera and neither mum nor baby seemed to be bothered by our quick fly-by.  More on the park at a later date but first I am still catching up on our travels.

August 21, 2013 and 3,179 miles from home.
We checked out of our Hotel in Cedar City, Utah at 8.26 a.m.
This morning we stopped off at our first Walmart at 8:59 AM.  We bought a power strip because some of the hotels don't have enough electric sockets for our recharging (time's have changed), a couple of memory cards for the camera, a sandwich to share for today's picnic lunch, a couple of slices of watermelon, and 'some bitches for smacking'.   Huh????

No I did not really say that!!!  What kind of a violent person do you think I am?  This iPad does not understand me and that is how she translated what I said, which was actually 'some veggies for snacking'.  A strange thing is going on with Suri.  If I say something with my English accent I get some very peculiar sentences written out when note taking.  She's delightful for when I want to record a quick note on our journey here and there. Gregg said to try an American accent, which I did.  My American accent isn't that good but do you know what?  She translated it perfectly.  Go figure!  Well, it has given us some laughs because apparently I can swear like a trooper.  No, I don't curse, apparently Suri thinks I do.  Some naughty words she thinks I have said, she won't even translate.  Okay Apple people, get your iPad to understand English English.  

On our way to Bryce Canyon we passed through some very pretty scenery and stopped at one of the overlooks.  While we were there taking in the view, a very nice young couple came along.  They got out of their car, smiled and enjoyed the view with us for a few moments.  As often happens now they asked if they could take our photo, and we in turn took theirs.  

Gregg asked them what he always is interested in learning, 'Where are you from?"  They said they lived in Seattle now but were originally from Saudi Arabia, and that they were on their honeymoon.  We congratulated them and wished them many years of happiness.  They were a lovely couple and obviously very happy.

We didn't leave right away and another vehicle turned up.  This time it was a lady driving one of the smaller rental RV's.  She strolled over, lit up a cigarette, breathed deeply, smiled and then Gregg said, "Do you have a toilet in that RV?"  She looked a little startled.  Why Gregg was asking was that we had talked about renting an RV for this trip originally and the question came up.  From the expression on her face I quickly said, "Oh no, he doesn't want to use it, we're just curious if your RV has one!"  Well, that worked.  She started a conversation with us and told us all about the pro's and con's of renting an RV.  We detected an accent.  Gregg's next question was less threatening,  "Where are you from?"  She said she was French but had lived the last 12 years in Tahiti, adding that Tahiti being such a small island, they have to get off it at least once a year and this year they decided to come to Bryce Canyon.   We never saw the 'they' part of her conversation. "They" were barricading their toilet no doubt!

You meet the most interesting people when traveling don't you?
I have added a few new items to Gregg's Traveler Code List. 

"For crying out loud Gregg, don't ask anyone if their RV has a toilet!" (Denise)

"I was just curious!" (Gregg)

Right now there is the smell of cedar everywhere.  It is intoxicating and you want to breathe deeply.  

We have just gone through the Red Canyon at 11.15 a.m....

and just reached the summit at 7,777 feet.  

11.30 a.m.  We always stop at the first visitor/welcome center we come to when we have passed the State line.  They are generally fun to look around, the people who run them are friendly and very helpful, and I bought lots of postcards and a few magnets showing the area.

We are not allowed to feed the squirrels but Gregg said we have no objection to one breaking into our car and stealing our snacks.  I think he would feel a little differently if it was a bear wouldn't he?

We tried to get into the Bryce Canyon Lodge but no joy and we didn't expect to, but as we came through the park gate they advertised vacancies, and we thought we would give it a try.  

We could sign up for a mule ride.  No, not ready for that yet.  

8,031 feet and we are not far from Bryce Canyon.  Tell you the truth we are a bit lost but I always have faith in Gregg's sense of direction.  No we're not lost Gregg says.  I've forgotten what number that is on our Travelers Code, and right now I'm too tired to look it up.   

There are Prairie Dogs around here according to the signs, and we have to look out for deer crossing the road.   We see neither.

We found Bryce Canyon.   The views were breathtaking but I found that the older I get the less easy I become around heights.   

I saw what I think is a Steller's Jay.....

and a really cute little critter.  He looks like a Chipmunk but he is different somehow.

People offered to take our photo again.  We brought the tripod along but there were too many people around to try and set it up safely.  Please note in the photo below that there is no safety rail behind us.  It is not an instant drop but all the same, I like my safety rails.   

We see a lot of trees that have had lightning strikes and have heard thunder rumbling in the distance.  

We sat down on a bench and had our picnic lunch overlooking the canyon.  What a place to have a picnic!  

By this time we had moved to a quieter overlook and a nice young Japanese couple offered to take our photo.  We of course took theirs.

Here are a few more photos from Bryce Canyon.  

 Before we left we decided to make a two night reservation in Moab, Utah, not too far from The Arches National Park.  

3.02 p.m.  Just passed Piutte. Cute little town with a humongous court house
3.15 p.m. Stopped at Marysvale for gas. Old timers sitting on the porch at the general store/gas station watching the world go by.  It feels like we are in Mayberry and Andy Griffith is going to walk around the corner.

No services  for the next 110 miles, and no cell phone service either at 4.32 p.m.

5.15 p.m. we have just come down a very long mountain.  It was a bit hair-raising in parts.

6.37 p.m. We have arrived at our hotel.  Yee-hah!   Gregg says I sound like a local now.  It's because of my new American accent with all the conversations I have with Suri.  Well, that's what happens on a very long road trip I guess.


  1. American accent? What does that mean? If you travel in the States, you will note many different accents, such as a southern accent, a New York accent, even a Hawaiian accent! Lol. Love your photos and commentary, Denise. Aloha from Hawaii.

  2. Are you ever going home??? LOL Seriously this is one amazing vacation touring the US. Love traveling through your photos

  3. This post had us both in stitches!
    Thank you for starting my day with a giggle...oh, and beautiful scenery!
    Jane x

  4. Bryce is my favorite canyon of them dramatic yet intimate. Suri is fun...glad you've got an American accent available!

  5. bitches for smacking made me laugh!

  6. I recognize that cute little chipmunk-that's the kind I remember feeding when we were kids and would go to the mountains. I don't use stunning in comments ever, but your photos ARE stunning!♥♫

  7. Funny about Gregg's toilet question and Suri's misunderstandings.
    Sounds like you've met many interesting people and seen so many highlights of Utah scenery. I'll be interested to see your photos of Yellowstone.

  8. Oh besides the beautiful photos, your sense of humor was just as pleasant! ♥

  9. You and Suri definitely gave me my smiles for the day....loving this vicarious trip. (We missed Kanab, but have been all the other places so far and loved them. Have fun. (I read all your posts but feel kind of guilty commenting on every one, b/c you don't have so much time to read comments while you're traveling, I know!_

  10. Great post. Love your conversations with everyone, that's how I like to travel, too. Yes, that's a chipmunk, maybe they're different, here in the West.

  11. What spectacular views, Denise! I feel as though I am on this trip with you. Adorable bluejay!

  12. Fantastic photos ! I am so glad you guys are having a great time ! Yup I had a giggle to lol ! Thanks for sharing and taking us along . Have a good day !

  13. I never did get to visit Yellowstone. I had hoped that when my husband and I both retired we would go but I retired and then before my husband could retire, he passed away. I did get to see Bryce and Zion back when I was a kid traveling with my parents.

  14. Suri doesn't always understand us either. Sigh...

    I absolutely LOVED this. Bryce Point was our favorite lookout. Isn't it wonderful how there's always somebody who will offer to take your photo?

    I know what you mean about those lookouts without rails or fences.

  15. Denise, I can not picture you cussing. LOL Suri is just being funny, I guess. Loved all your photos of Bryce, one of my favorite parks next to Yellowstone. Have a fun time!

  16. I agree with Gigi. My daughter is a linguist and she is constantly pointing out the differences in spoken English and inflections of speech. Such fun!!

    You could visit the Cibola ranch in the Culpeper area and see many Bison. That's the farm/ranch where my two granddaughters Hannah and Joy worked this summer. A real Bison herd destined for the tables in the DC area. Dianne

  17. hehe, suri and auto correct, they sure can be problem-matic!!

    looks like you two are still friends and having the time of your lives ;)

  18. I've heard so many tales about talking to the computer that I'm not sure I want to even go into that. Isn't Bryce wonderful? I'd LOVE to stay in the lodge.

  19. you're so funny Denise as is Gregg. Super photos.


  20. Still smiling about the bitches in need of a smack. And loving the scenery. Mega thanks.

  21. What a wonderful road trip you and Gregg are on!

  22. I couldn't help but chuckle when you described your problems with Suri's lack of understanding of English English. I guess I should be glad my iPad doesn't support Suri -- I'm not sure how she would do with southern English. I enjoyed your pictures from Bryce Canyon -- that (and Red Canyon) were our favorite part of our 2011 trip out west.

  23. Glad that the weather has been so cooperative on your travels, Denise.

  24. A delightful trip, but your smile is the best part!

    ALOHA Friend
    from Honolulu
    Comfort Spiral

  25. I laughed and laughed at your conversations with your Suri.... SO--it can't understand English English, huh?????? Love it... And--I thought 'bitches' for snacks was appropriate, since it's always the snacks which land on my hips and stay there!!!!! ha ha

    We loved Bryce --but neither of us are afraid of heights. In fact, the higher I am, the happier I am!!!!! ha...

    I also remember that drive after we left Bryce Canyon --for the Arches. Beautiful drive --but lots of mountains.... Would love to take that drive in the Fall when the Aspens are in color...


  26. Great Header photo and love this post of your time in Bryce Canyon. Yes, what a place to have a picnic!

  27. Bryce Canyon was one of my favourite places. I would have loved to have time to walk down into the canyon but we were on a tour bus. You are lucky to be self driving. It must be fun. Suri has got me interested. What is it exactly?

  28. Bryce Canyon is beautiful. Great pics and interesting commentary.

  29. Denise, how funny about your accent and Suri! I am glad you are having so much fun and getting to see our beautiful American West!