Saturday, October 6, 2012

I'm baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack!  
We arrived home around dinnertime last night from a wonderful trip to northern Arizona and southern Utah.  It was great to get away, a nice 'reward' after the past 9 months of surgery, chemo, and radiation.  And we could not have asked for better weather.  We surprised Alex (and friends) in the pool, but the house survived our absence.  Of course Sapphire was very glad to see me.  I wasn't sure if she'd still be with us - at 16 she's definitely in her declining years - but she's hanging in there.  Marcela (and her mom Margarita, and her sister Ramona) arrived from California last night, but it was late and I was already in bed.  I had the cottage all set for their arrival, which was nice for me and for them.  This morning we had coffee together, and Ramona was thrilled to meet and feed Pokey.  
Then they were off to spend the day with friends (our original plan, since we didn't know exactly when Tom and I would be returning.)  They'll be back in time for dinner.  Not sure where we'll go yet.  Alex is working tonight so maybe we'll go to 'his' restaurant.
I kept a diary of sorts on my iPad during the trip, but didn't want to post because I had no way to add pix.  So for the next couple of days I'll be blogging about this past week.  Of course I took a gazillion pix (with scenery like that, who could blame me?) but that's the beauty of a digital camera... no film to waste!

So fasten your seatbelt... here we go!  On Sunday we headed north.  Our first stop was in Flagstaff for brunch.  Of course I was dealing with the aftermath of my fall, so it was easy-to-eat scrambled eggs for me.  We made it to Page and checked into the motel in time for Tom to catch the second half of the Cardinals game.  They were behind when we tuned in, but with us cheering them on they managed to tie up the game in the last minute of regulation play, sending the game into overtime - very exciting.  I had thought about taking a nap, but who can sleep at a time like that? <g>  It was nice for Tom (and the rest of Phoenix) that the Cardinals ended up winning.

After that we explored Page & Lake Powell, drove over to Antelope Canyon to see about their tours (our Tuesday plan, but I'll give you a teaser here)

Not a whole lot of choice for places in Page to eat dinner once we eliminated all the fast food places.  Thank goodness for soup and mashed potatoes.  My mouth was doing a tad better than Saturday, but was still very tender, and of course additional bruises(in addition to the ones on my face) had appeared on my hands, wrist, knee, etc.

Monday morning we were up bright and early, and after breakfast (again scrambled eggs, and a muffin I pulled apart and fed to myself in tiny pieces) we were off to the North Rim, over Navajo Bridge at Lee's Ferry (no rafts in the water) and through Marble Canyon by the Vermillion Cliffs.

The aspens have started turning yellow, and in some places were a fiery orange.  Some of the pix I took were from the moving car, through the windshield.  I love my camera!

We drove through a number of areas devastated by forest fire, even in the Grand Canyon park itself, but aspens are the first to grow back after a fire (because they do best in the sun) and that helped 'prettify' the area.

We walked around all the viewpoints near the Lodge, and had lunch there (my elk chili was yummy) and then did the Rim Drive.  My pictures are a little washed out, especially those I took in the morning, because we were looking into the sun, but it was still beautiful.

(Did you notice the people on top of the arch in the last pic?)

We were definitely 'where the deer and the antelope play' (one darted out right in front of  us in the morning), and in the afternoon we saw others grazing by the road.  Always fun to spot the wildlife.

It was amazingly warm for October 1.  I had brought a light-weight hoodie plus a regular sweatshirt, expecting chillier temps, but it was definitely t-shirt weather.We were back in Page by suppertime, and took a chance on the Chinese restaurant.  The buffet turned out to be quite good - and rice and noodle dishes were easy for me to manage.
It did feel good to climb into bed.  I did more walking Monday than I'd done in the entire last 9 months!

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