After our marathon drive from southern Oregon to southern California, we awoke to blue skies and just a slight chill in the air and guess what, we were just 1 hour north of Anaheim, which, if you don’t know is home to Disneyland. There is something about Disneyland that makes it just about impossible for me to miss out on an opportunity to spend a day in the Magic Kingdom and with the park all decked out in holiday goodness, we decided to take a day and have some fun. And that’s exactly what we did. To see more photos from our day, please browse our Facebook album.
Spending a day in Disneyland is a little like running a marathon; not that I’ve ever run a marathon, I just usually wake up the next morning feeling as if I did. Having that much fun is exhausting, especially when you only have 1 day and you want to capture all of your favorite moments in the park. We are seasoned Disneyland visitors but if you’ve never been, I would highly recommend a minimum of 2- 3 days for your first visit so you can Park Hop between Disneyland and California Adventure, which is right next door.
With a day of marathon driving and a day of marathon fun behind us we slept the sleep of the exhausted and hit the snooze button multiple times this morning before dragging ourselves out of bed to begin another day on the road. Today, we drove about 350 miles from Anaheim, CA to Phoenix, AZ. This is a drive we have made many times but it’s been at least 5 years since the last trek so it felt a little like visiting an old friend and we actually appreciate the desert; it has its own sense of style.
When it’s my turn to be a passenger I am left with nothing but my eyes and imagination because unlike Abi, I get ridiculously car sick so I cannot read, write or sleep. I stare out the window and try to find anything that will stir my imagination. I think about how it must have sucked for the ranchers who tried to scratch out a living in the desert or when we pass by an abandoned mud/brick/rock house I make up little stories about who built the house and why in the hell they built it in the middle of such an unforgiving environment. When you really pay attention to what you’re seeing, it’s pretty cool what you find.
And when I’m on the brink of total boredom I can stare at Susie GPS and watch our progress on the map. But only for a few blinks at a time or nausea here I come.
And so day 3 on the road has come to an end. Tomorrow, it’s on to Tucson, AZ where we will catch up with a friend of ours who is on a 2-year RV trek around the country. As we continue eastbound we are ever vigilant of the storm front moving through the mid-west and how it may impact our path, but more importantly we continue to be inspired by the journey itself.
I’m looking at the time and realizing it has been 12 hours, almost to the minute, since we rolled onto Interstate Hwy 5 this morning. And although we logged nearly 650 miles we are not where we thought we’d be at this time.
But back-up, last night as we watched the evening news we paused the show and I traced my finger (on the t.v. screen) along the route we had hoped to take across Nevada, Utah, Colorado and beyond and discovered that Mother Nature and her nephew Jack Frost were wreaking havoc right where we hoped to land, Arches National Park near Moab, UT. Now, here’s the thing, we’re not afraid of cold weather, but there comes a time when you have to heed the warning and call it a day. And according to my friend, Mike, who lives in Reno, NV, we made the right call as he described the weather as miserable.
As I sit here, I can smell the turkey sizzling and crackling in the oven. Abi is outside working in the yard – something he never tires of doing – and I’m puttering, continuing to ready ourselves for our upcoming road trip. Although I can smell the turkey and I’m looking forward to a delicious (if I do say so myself) feast for two, I am not at all focused on Thanksgiving. Instead, I am looking forward to the days ahead.
We’re a small family, just the 3 of us, and for whatever reason we spent many Thanksgivings away from home so it never feels quite right to be at home for the holiday. Our holiday tradition, when our son was still home with us, was to find our way to some point in the Sierra Mountains to get our annual fix of breathing in the gloriously fresh pine-scented air that one can only find in the mountains. More often than not we spent Thanksgiving weekend in Yosemite, truly one of our most favorite places on the planet.
As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. ~John Fitzgerald Kennedy
“Will you marry me, Patti?” quipped Pat Sajak, to which of course I replied, “Sure,” even though I was obviously already married. But because I wasn’t sure what to write on my bio card, I wrote, pastry chef, which was true at the time as I baked a lot of the desserts for our restaurant and it’s why Pat asked me to marry him. Apparently, he liked desserts. But back up…
Once upon a time (isn’t that how all good stories begin) I was a contestant on the Wheel of Fortune Game Show. Yep, it’s true. And I gotta tell ya it was one heck of a good time and it’s my only claim to fame!
Just for fun here’s 25 things you may not know about me. They are in no particular order and I credit my sweet friend Neva for inspiring me to write this list.
1. If you look up the word impatient in the dictionary, you’ll find my name.
2. I am a self-admitted history geek. I believe firmly that we have to know how far we’ve come in order to move forward.
3. I am a retired elementary school teacher, child development center director and university instructor. It’s a career I loved and was often challenged by.
4. I have been married for nearly 36 years but never walked down the aisle. Civil ceremony. It was in Honolulu though!
5. I’ve had 3 surgical procedures on my left foot. I think that’s more than my fair share.
6. I was a contestant on the Wheel of Fortune television game show. Absolutely true.
I know I said in my last post – The Finer Things in Life – that aside from the fact we will arrive in Washington, D.C. for the holidays, we have no set plans or destinations in mind for our upcoming 2-month road trip; and that is the truth of the matter. But, it has occurred to me as reality settles in that we probably should have some sort of game plan. I mean, we’ll be traveling in the dead of winter so I don’t think we’ll be taking a northern route across country. Because we may need chains to cross over the mountain passes leading out of southern Oregon, we will carry tire chains with us, but really – no way do we want to have to deal with putting on chains. And by we, I mean Abi.
With 3 maps and GPS in hand, I suspect we will make our way across country pretty much right through the middle of the country, leaning toward a more southern route. And once we leave Washington, D.C., we will most likely aim due south because aside from visiting the Miami area – in another lifetime – we have never explored the southern states and heading to the northeast in the dead of winter would not be ideal. I think to date, we have visited and/or passed through 33 states, not bad, eh?