Sunday, August 26, 2012

Michigan, Arizona, and Texas

Josh and I have been in Michigan since our grand return (well, grand to us, at least) from Asia in late January of last year.  It doesn't seem like that long, but the travel bug is starting to get to both of us.

J is starting his teaching practicum next week, and will be working for the next two semesters at a local high school when he is not taking classes once a week at the university.  I am the newest member of the STA Travel staff in East Lansing.  My job is to help other folks plan their trips domestically and abroad and the bonus is sharing my experience to make their travel more fun.  I also get to live vicariously through my customers, which is pretty sweet.  Next best thing to traveling myself.

In the past month, I've had 3 weeks of training in Arizona and Texas.  A co-worker and I managed to get to the Grand Canyon and Sedona on our weekend off.

This was my first trip to Arizona, so I was pretty jazzed to have a chance to see the state a bit while I was there.  Everyone kept asking what I though of the Canyon.  To be honest, it looks unreal.  Like a painting.  The part that really made it difficult to take in, was the nearly perfectly flat horizon.  If the plateaus had varying heights, it might have been easier for my eyes to understand.

Beautiful, either way.

Also, the clouds were amazing.

The elk were mighty friendly.

That night, we drove to Sedona and spent Sunday wandering around trying to feel vortexes, and losing our path again and again.  Thankfully, we had one of America's finest joining us and he had a compass!

This is my "durr" face.  I was contemplating the bat population of sedona and if it was responsible for the white splatters on the rocks behind me.

We hiked to the Devil's Bridge instead of hunting vortexes this time around.  Fortunately for us, the random tourist trap we stopped at on the side of the road had the "BEST" vortex in Sedona.  Of course, we had to sit and try it out.

Sad to report, no tingly feelings.  Maybe I haven't gotten my chakras opened properly.  More yoga!

We also spent a some time at Slide Rock, a natural river/rock waterslide.  My lovely friend Jill, who I had the pleasure of visiting after a way too long 12 years, informed me that the ecoli warning at that river was lifted, so we had the green light for sliding, bruising, and nearly falling on our asses repeatedly because of moss-covered wet rocks.  A definite recommendation.  The water felt fantastic after a dirty day spent hiking in the desert.

No photos of Texas, I am afraid.  We stayed in a Dallas suburb called Lewisville.  I successfully avoided going to a restaurant called Redneck Heaven and learned how to do my job better.  I'd say that was a week well spent!

Besides all of this fun, J and I are growing our little garden again.  It's not doing as well as last year for the wedding, but we also live nearly an hour away, so it's difficult to spend as much time on.

Here is a beginning shot of the garden.  It's a bit more along by now.  The zucchini looked so promising... those flowers were lies and unkept promises :(

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