Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Greetings from Lake Tahoe
So we left Wichita, KS on Monday Dec 28th at about 3 or 4pm. Nick had the whole week off so we were just going to take our time. We made it all the way to Cimarron, NM and spent our first night on the road at the famous St James Hotel. The link tells some fun facts about it.
It's bar still has bullet holes in the ceiling from many years ago.
We had a nice breakfast buffet included in the stay and ate it in front of a warm fireplace.
After nosing around the place we headed out to the Philmont Scout Ranch there in Cimarron. Nick had ventured there many times as a young scout. It was a very beautiful place. (I'm thinking that I might be a Den mother some day.)
We then headed off to Angel Fire (ski resort in NM) to try and snowboard, but shopping for gear was taking too much time that we refocused on getting some more miles under our feet. We stopped at a gallery in Taos, NM...checked out the San Francisco de Asis Church,
ate at an amazing restaurant called the Trading Post,
and then stopped at the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge on our way out of town. We started heading up to the 4 corners, but a snow storm caused us to turn around and head south to Hwy 40. The hwy wasn't too bad for a few hours, but it started to snow and eventually got bad enough that we had to pull off and check into a hotel. The first 2 hotels we checked were completely booked. Now remember, this was a Tuesday night in Gallup, NM (I'd never heard of it and I can't imagine ever staying there again). Everyone traveling on the hwy must have felt it necessary to pull off. We ended up with a smoking room in the Sleep Inn. It wasn't ideal but the smell actually did become unnoticeable after a short time in the room, plus the bed was really nice and it was a good price.
On to Wednesday. We headed out after breakfast, down Hwy 40 again. We ended up taking Hwy 40 almost the entire rest of the trip.
We traveled across the rest of New Mexico, all of Arizona, into California where we got checked for produce (I had an apple and orange, but I got to keep them), ate dinner in Needles, CA, and made it to Hwy 395. My cousin Janna and I were IMing and she was telling us to STOP and Sleep because the drive up 395 is so pretty that we needed to see it during the day. So we pulled over somewhere and set up camp. It was so cold. I "slept" fully clothed (coat, scarf, hat and all) inside a mummy bag with feet warmers and was still cold. I was so ready to get out of there that I got up about 5 something with only about 5 hours sleep and headed out.
We arrived in Stateline, NV about 2pm on New Years Eve and managed to tour a couple apartments right away. We stayed with friends the first few days we were here while we were finding the right place for us. Those cool friends let us make ourselves at home while they both had to work New Years Eve. We treated ourselves to a dip in their hot tub (I was wearing my stocking hat and swimsuit :) ) and then a nap before meeting up with other friends downtown. We were in the streets with probably 1000 plus people at midnight.
New Years Day was my very first try at snowboarding. Nick has proven himself patient as my instructor. And YAY! it was fun.
We hit the slopes the following day, and I was actually making some progress. That slope was quite different from the first day. It was super long and took quite awhile to make our way down. At the bottom, it leveled out quite a bit. So in anticipation of running out of speed on the level part and having to "skate" (skating in snowboard lingo means you take off 1 binding, leaving the other foot still attached, using the free foot to move you along like you would on a skateboard. awful tiring and slow for a beginner) the rest the way to the bottom, it was decided that I/we would have to just go for it and go straight down without slowing myself too much and trying not to fall down. It's hard to describe exactly what this means to those who have never snowboarded. Let me just say that I still feel very out of control on the board and the front way down picks up a lot of speed. Speed... the faster I go, the more out of control I feel. Needless to say, I fell half way down. The worst fall as of yet. Right. Smack. On. My TailBone. OUCHY!!!!!!!!! Was basically ice because the snow was so hard and packed down. I was really done for the day. I didnt want to risk falling on it again. I could hardly sit down. Actually it hurt to even bend over or do other motions that I didnt think would be effected. The first 24 hrs was pretty bad. It was taking forever to get in and out of the car. And just walking. I did actually try to do a very small ride after quite a while of waiting for Nick, but I did awful. I was so focused on not wanting to fall, that I completely forgot everything I had learned. And I did keep falling. So........ I've been taking it easy ever since. My tailbone is getting better everyday so I believe I didnt break it. It is still sore and I'm super scared to hurt it again. I have soooooo much to learn.
Let's see, Sunday we moved into our new apartment. It use to be part of a time share so the place is fully furnished... furniture, dishes, paper towels, and all. Since we already had some furniture we had them take out the couch and chairs to use our own. But I'm so happy to have an actual bed to sleep in. And we have a kitchen table and washer and dryer. We still do not have internet yet. Hopefully it will be connected in the next couple days. (I am currently sitting in Firkin & Fox in Carson City listening to a band of Bagpipes (a surprise to us).) Oh yeah, we also have free cable tv. ha ha. I have HGTV on almost the entire time I'm home. :) I love it so. But I have been pretty productive. Monday, I unpacked and organized almost the entire apartment. I hung a few things today, but the rest will probably wait because I'm waiting for management to come take down their pictures. Its like a hotel in some ways. The pictures have to be taken down with a special tool to prevent them from being stolen. I doubt that would happen :).
ps. i have 2 videos from our trip that ill post another time.