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Author: Courtney

Bend, Oregon: 10/31/15

Happy Halloween! Happy Samhain!

Today is the thirteenth day of my journey– I think Halloween falling on the thirteenth day is a pretty great thing. 🙂 I didn’t do anything really to celebrate Samhain this year, but I did dress up for Halloween so here are the few pictures I took of myself today:

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Do you see my cheekbones in that one picture? You know the one. ^_~ It looks like life on the road is thinning me out a little. Anyway, this is the costume that my friend Megan sent to me on a whim because she knew I’d wear it– and I think it’s super awesome that she did that for me! I’m flattered that I came to mind. For those of you who haven’t known me long (because let’s face it–if you’re reading this blog you’ll get to know me pretty quickly), I used to wear costumes all the time in college. I tried to wear a costume every Friday or Saturday, mostly for the fun of it. I started making little outfits for myself in high school and eventually I started making and wearing eccentric clothes or costumes as often as possible. I packed a lot of clothes like that for this trip because I’ve worn uniforms for too many hours of my life–I think self-expression through clothing is really important, at least for me.

Anyway, I got up pretty early today so I could make good time getting to Bend to visit my mom’s friend Rick and his wife Rita. I loaded the car and said good bye to Raven and the family and I left by 9:30, but it was raining pretty heavily so it was slow going. I actually hydroplaned for the very first time, and then at least another ten times after that. I was able to remain calm for the most part but I was gripping the steering wheel and being wary of other drivers. If I didn’t need a massage before today I definitely need one now–if I have time I might do it in Arizona before I drive to Nashville, or maybe I’ll try to do it in Greeneville if I can wait that long. I’ll definitely need some before I return to work, though.

So I ate a little less than half a sandwich for breakfast before I left (my leftovers from last night’s dinner) and I was getting hungry around 11 so I stopped to look for gas (the prices here are so much higher than NC) and went into Safeway to walk around and clear my head for driving in more pouring rain. I got a block of Parmesan that was on sale, kombucha, water, Dr. Pepper since I was a little sleepy and that’s my go-to caffeine, a box of wasabi soy sauce Triscuits (which are SO GOOD!), and some red grapes to snack on in the car and by the time I finished shopping and talking to Mom on the phone (about the rain and hydroplaning, plus asking her to contact Rick to let him know when I’d arrive) the rain had lessened a lot. It was still raining enough for it to be a little extra dangerous on the highway, but I was fine and I turned up my Notre Dame de Paris CD and sang all the French words I remembered. Since I was running so late at Phoenix I only grabbed one CD case and I wish I’d grabbed more CDs because I could have had my Nightmare before Christmas CD for today, or Rocky Horror Picture Show, or at least my old school CDs that I stuck in the other case–like Evanescence and TATU. My iPod won’t connect to the rental car, so the only CDs in the case I grabbed are musicals (which is fine with me–I ended the drive with Les Miserables and I listened to Hairspray after Notre Dame de Paris) and Italian love songs and a new German CD I haven’t listened to yet that I THINK is full of German Christmas songs. Oh, and The Killers and one of my Pirate CDs–but mostly musicals. Oh, and I managed to listen to Sweeney Todd today–that’s sort of Halloween related. It’s a stretch. Moving on, I had no idea I was in Oregon until I was in Portland when the rain let up–I must have missed the sign since I was preoccupied with the rainy driving conditions. Soon after I ended up on this back road and started driving up through mountains and eventually I reached high desert, which I wasn’t expecting in Oregon. It was a beautiful drive and I love all the pine trees; I’ve missed pine trees ever since we moved out of Northern Idaho. The speed limit was only 55 but it seems that the locals don’t care because they were easily going 70 and I was letting everyone pass me since I’d rather be cautious about speeding than find myself with a ticket, which meant I didn’t make up any time and I didn’t arrive until almost 5. Rick and Rita showed me around and introduced me to the dogs then we went out to this little arts event Rita had found in the paper. It was a gathering of local artists with their wares for sale and they were passing out treats. If I had brought my own cup I could have gotten hot chocolate and beer, but I didn’t have one so I bought a clay cup from one of the artists there. The guy I spoke to who was also buying cups noticed that my cup had some bubbling and when you look at it in the light it almost looks like dragon skin or something, so now it’s the cup I plan to use for Dungeon and Dragon events (when I eventually start playing again–I’ve been missing it for a long time now). I got some hot chocolate with orange liquor and cinnamon as my “treat” and after we’d walked around and looked at everything (I bought one more thing as a gift) we went out to have dinner at the best burger place. I can’t remember the name, but they told me it was the best burger place in town and it was on the corner of one of the streets–downtown Bend is only two streets and there’s a big park and lots of hiking nearby. They call it “The Dog Town” because dogs are allowed inside all the stores and people put water outside for them to always have water. I think it’s great, and I did see a lot of dogs while we were driving around. Anyway, I tried the same burger that Rita gets but I could only finish half of it–so now I have lunch for tomorrow. 🙂

Day 13 gAfter dinner we went back to the house and I went upstairs to sort out whether I would drive the rental car back to Phoenix like I’d originally planned or if I’d drive back to Seattle and fly to Phoenix. Assuming I stayed in a hotel both nights, it would be about the same amount of money either way and I’d much rather go back to Seattle and keep exploring (plus I’ll get to hang out with people I know I’ll have lots of fun with) than drive two days in a row just to drive two days in a row right after that on my way to Nashville. Plus this way I get to color and read more while I’m at the airport and on the plane–AND my flight has a layover in Denver so I’m still technically making it to Colorado, even if just the airport. ^_^ After I called around and tried to get good deals I settled for the deal I found on the internet, which was better than both the other deals I was offered, and I left a message for my rental car place since they left me a message confirming that they will lower the price of my rental car if I return it to Seattle instead of Phoenix. All in all, I’m happy with my decision to go back–plus I left something there. This morning as I was packing I thought to myself, “I want to make sure I have everything–I don’t want to ‘accidentally’ leave something as an excuse to come back” but the thing I forgot wasn’t with my stuff because it was mailed there and I hadn’t gotten it yet. Fate works in mysterious ways. 😉

After I figured out my plans I joined Rick and Rita and we talked about travel, family, and all sorts of things–it’s really nice to just share conversation, especially after busy days. Rita had read that I like kombucha so she had bought me some bottles of locally produced kombucha so I poured some in my new mug and drank it while we had homemade apple pie and ice cream (I should have taken a picture of the pie–it was still tart and since I love Granny Smith apples the most I really liked it).

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The one I tried was strawberry lemonade and it was good, but I’m looking forward to trying the pomegranate lemonade tomorrow with breakfast. 🙂 After Rita went to bed Rick and I stayed up talking a little longer and I was sitting on the floor petting the two small dogs since they kept coming to me. Tucker is the small black one and he kept flopping onto his back as soon as I touched him so he could get tummy rubs. Normally he doesn’t lick, but he propped up and gave me a kiss right on the mouth and it was super cute. 🙂 I miss Angel–when I would get home from work Angel would jump onto the back of the couch and I’d lean down and let her lick my face in greeting. I used to really dislike dog kisses on my face, but when you love something I suppose you get over things like fear of slobber. ^_~ Anyway, Tuff is the girl and she’s the big one–she came for a few pets but mostly it was the two boys who wanted to be pet and I happily obliged them while Rick and I chatted about all sorts of things. Then I went to bed where I played the Halloween game on Google (Go Team Yellow!) and started writing this blog later than intended. So, here are the dogs and good night!

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Seattle: 10/30/15

Hello again! I almost didn’t post tonight because it logged me out and I couldn’t find my password, but luckily it appeared for me. 🙂 Today was a busy day and I tried to nap earlier but all I did was lie there thinking, so I’m ready for sleeping as soon as I tell you all about my day. We got off to a pretty good start–we left around 10 and initially the three of us were going to take separate cars so Raven could take Desi home if she got too tired but I told her I’d be fine coming home and then going back out again if it meant we got to chat more, so we all rode together. They’re members of the aquarium so once we got there I was able to get a discount since I was a guest of theirs and it was really fun. We touched the tubers at the touch tank–the little creatures that shrink back into their homes if you touch them and then gradually come back out again. There were at least two school groups there, so it was really crowded, but it was fun and we mostly avoided the crowds. They had a medium sized octopus that was hanging out on the glass so we could see all its tentacles, some pretty coral, and tons of other fish. Oh, and I found a Napoleon-fish in one of the tanks and I took a picture because I only recognized it from playing Animal Crossing–which I would have enjoyed playing today during my sleepy afternoon, but overall I’m glad I left it.

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That big blue fish is the Napoleon Fish–I’m pretty positive that’s its actual name. I was pretty excited to recognize it. 🙂 And the little yellow ones are butterfly fish. There were also some interesting artifacts in the tanks, like carved pumpkins and a Seahawks helmet–apparently there are a lot of devoted fans here in Seattle.

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There was also this really cool Halloween-themed carving:

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We took a picture with the pirate skeleton and Desi and I gave each other a high five/high foot with the skeleton arm and leg that were lying on the ground.

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Desi was so cute with her little Elsa gown–people kept addressing her as “Princess” and later when we walked through Pike Place two of the vendors gave her small flowers to carry around. 🙂 It was pretty magical. Speaking of magical, when we got to the take with the Red Lionfish Desi put her hand against the glass and the fish tried to press himself into the glass. Raven asked what she was doing and Desi said she was giving the fish love because he was happy-sad. It was really sweet.

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Next we went outside to see the Sea Lions and we found this guy sleeping even though his buddy kept swimming and splashing around him. He looked so peaceful and his nostrils were pretty cool to watch as they flared and shut, but we didn’t stay long.

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Next we moved on to watch them feeding and playing with the otters. They would give them clams and the otters would tear them open and rip the meat out with their teeth–it was pretty cool to watch and I got a pretty good picture (if I do say so myself ^_~):

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When we went downstairs we could see them swimming and looking for scraps they may have missed. Raven said their shells were like their dirty dishes and it seems to fit–they were strewn about and I saw the exoskeleton of a shrimp float by and I called it a “shrimp wrapper” since we were comparing the shells to dishes and it fit with that concept.

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Soon after Desi got hungry and we were almost finished anyway so we headed over to the place by the Wheel to get fish and chips since that’s a big thing in this area. We found seats overlooking this beautiful view:

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Well, the water was actually from the aquarium side, but you get the idea–we were surrounded by water and it was beautiful. And they fried our fish after we ordered so when I brought it back to the table it was super hot. The weather was a lot warmer today, by the way–it was windy but I didn’t need my thick coat like I did yesterday. Now I know to bring options when I go places. Anyway, look at how delicious my food looks! It was just as yummy as the picture looks:

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After we ate we went on the Wheel! I don’t know if there’s a proper name for it, so I’m just capitalizing Wheel as its name for now. Apparently the normal ride length is three spins but as we were up there Desi said we were going to get an extra spin and we all hoped for it and it happened, then as we were ending the fourth spin she said “One more time!” and we didn’t know whether we would or not so Raven told Desi to ask for it and see if we got it. We did! We got five circles instead of three! It was definitely magical. 🙂 Here are some pictures:

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The place where we ate.

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There was a seal playing in the water as we went up!

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Desi and I in front of the water. 🙂

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Desi took this one of Raven and I and it’s just so perfect. 🙂

So after the ride we were planning to drive around so Raven could show me some of the places and we talked more about travel and life. We weren’t planning to go to Pike Place anymore but Raven asked Desi if she thought she could handle walking around for a little and she said yes so we found a great parking spot and Raven showed me around. We got cider and Raven bought some flowers– I had never seen a place with so many pretty bouquets and they were all so fairly priced! It was a great trip and I ended up buying some organic lavender lotion from Moon Valley Organics. After our purchase they told us that if we went on FB and liked them we could get a free lip balm so we both did that and I almost went for the cinnamon but I ended up choosing mint. 🙂 It started getting a little too crowded soon after choosing the flowers so we walked back in the outer market and we stopped at Mishou or Michou where we picked up some things for dinner–I got a half of a baked potato and a full, large sandwich which I thought I’d be able to finish but now I have half a sandwich waiting for me at breakfast. We put the food away when we got back and we were all pretty tired so we rested for a little. I went to my bed and tried to sleep but all I managed was to close my eyes and somewhat quiet my mind. I have a lot to think about with this trip and life in general, so it was good to relax. When I went back upstairs Raven and Desi were looking at hair tutorials for her Elsa costume tomorrow and Jay got home soon after. We shared dinner and had fun conversation about daily life and the occasional travel story and afterward Desi was dancing around to the end music from Dolphin Tale (which Raven told me all about since I’ve never seen it and it’s one of Desi’s favorite movies). After the movie ended she went searching for her Katy Perry CD before performing some adorable dancing by herself and then with her dad. It was really sweet to watch. 🙂 We just spent the evening enjoying each others’ company until around 8:20 when it was time for Desi to go to bed and I retired to my room where I started writing this, got distracted and forgot I was in the middle of writing it, and now here I am finishing it! I’m pretty tired still so I’m going to enjoy my last night here before heading to Oregon tomorrow. Have a wonderful night! Enjoy this picture of a cuttlefish and a super tiny hermit crab!

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Seattle: 10/29/15

Bienvenue! (Welcome!)

Our story actually begins long before Hercules, many eons ago… just kidding. ^_~ The story of how I came to be here started long ago, but let’s just focus on the present for now since a lot happened today. I slept in a little this morning and spent time with Raven and Desi (her daughter) talking and making plans for tomorrow. Raven asked what I wanted to do and I told her I wanted to check out some nature parks or something similar so she printed out a map of Discovery Park and told me where to go and that’s what I decided to do today. I got ready and put the park into my GPS. It took me to the East and North parking lots, but I was trying to park in the South and I ended up leaving to try to find it on my own and I turned down some road on a whim and found it! Raven told me to park there so I could still get to the viewpoints and turn around if I got tired instead of finishing the loop. So here are some pictures from the beginning of the trail.

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So I walked and looked out at the water and I have always loved green and grey together in nature–it used to be my favorite thing to sit on a boat and look at the contrast between the green of the trees and the grey of the sky and the water on cloudy days. It is absolutely beautiful here and I love it–it renewed my interest in visiting my old house in Idaho, but I will have to save that for another trip. Not much exciting happened during the first part of my walk. I did find a bench with a nice view where I sat for a little while imagining what it would be like to be able to go sit there all the time, or somewhere similar with so much beauty around. Here’s the view:

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And I took some more pictures of myself here… lots of pictures today. 😉

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I love this last one; it’s like “I compel thee with the power of my selfie-stick! Arise, brave knight!” At least, that’s how I see it. And it looks like I subconsciously honored the drowned god in the previous picture–it works, since there’s water behind me. 🙂 “What is dead may never die.” I just can’t stop throwing in my fandoms, can I? I love it. Plus with my hood up (it was colder and winder than expected based on the hourly weather report I looked at–tomorrow I’ll be better prepared) it looks like I’m ready to perform some magic. Which I always am. 😉

So anyway, I left the main trail I was following to go to the beach trail and I turned around at the bottom of one of the sets of stairs to take a picture for Mom because she likes photos like that. It was a little later, after my stomach decided it was time for food, that I turned around and walked all the way back up the several sets of stairs I’d climbed down so I had to sit and rest at the top for a minute.

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I do enjoy climbing and it was good exercise, but I definitely could feel that it had been a while. The only hiking I did in Sedona was up to the airport lookout and that’s not even a real hike–it’s just a few minutes of some steep steps, so it doesn’t count in my opinion. (Side note–when I used to go to the gym I would do the stair stepper and envision reaching the Castle in the Air from the Phantom Tollbooth. Just felt like sharing. ^_^)

So all I really did aside from breathe in the scents of pine and salt water, which was incredibly refreshing, was take photos. Here are some nature pictures from my mini-hike:

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The two trees in the picture above created a huge canopy (the picture before it) and if they grow together they’ll make a tree almost as big as the Totoro tree. 🙂 I was tempted to sit in the groove of the tree in the back, but I wasn’t sure and also I took these on my way out and I was hungry so I didn’t stick around.

Speaking of food, when I got back to my car I looked online to find a good place for lunch–I decided on some fish place near where I was and I plugged it into my GPS but on the way I passed a small grocery store and decided to pull in. The first thing on display was sushi, which I decided I wanted to have here a long time ago, but I decided to look around. I didn’t know that there were kombucha flavors with enough alcohol that you need to be twenty-one to buy them, by the way–that was news to me. I ended up getting a Ginger, non-alcoholic (at least to the point of regulation–all kombucha has trace amounts, I think, from the fermentation process) kombucha and making a Roe or Poe with rice, seaweed salad, raw salmon and raw tuna, both seasoned to be spicy. I also got an apple since my main fruit intake has been dried apricots. 🙂 I was initially planning to drive back to the park to sit on a bench and eat them (that’s why I stopped there instead of driving to the fish place) but it seems I couldn’t find my way back as easily and I found myself in Ballard. I saw a sign for Golden Gardens park and I followed signs for that and wound up sitting in a parking lot looking at a dog park in the rain. I thought about getting out to find a bench but since it was raining off and on I just sat there trying to be warm. I switched the air to heat and still sat there freezing for about 15 minutes eating before realizing that the air wasn’t actually on and my adjustment had changed nothing. After I turned on the heat it did warm up pretty quickly, though. 🙂

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My salmon and tuna meal with the remains of my apple.

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The view I had with the rain–after it stopped raining when I was trying to figure out where to go I saw a large group of puppies playing in the dog park and it was the most adorable thing. I was tempted to go see if someone would let me play with their dogs, but I decided to just drive around and see what happened. When I got to the bottom of the hill I turned right instead of going back the way I came and there was more parking and there was a playground with swings right on the beach so I pulled in. I felt inspired to swing even though it was cold and within a few minutes a woman approached me and asked if I’d like to be in her photography class. I didn’t understand at first, but she asked if she could take pictures of me to practice capturing movement. I kept swinging until she got at least a few shots she was happy with and then I slowed down just a little before jumping off the swing like I used to do when I was a kid. I asked if she could send them to me and she gave me her phone number to leave a message, saying she was bad at email, so I called while we sat there and left a message asking for copies to be sent to me. I told her it was my first day there and she asked for another picture which I happily allowed before we parted ways. I was on the end swing:

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Oh, and there were two little boys playing on the rest of the playground behind me and one of them kept yelling/singing “I believe I can fly” every time he went down the slide. I feel a deep resonance with this child because I’m pretty sure I used to do the same thing, lol. It warmed my heart and made me laugh.

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Anyway, there are TONS of crows here. My friend Michelle would probably love it here.

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After a few quick selfies on the beach I decided it was way too cold and I wanted to do something inside so I headed out again.

I wanted to get to the main area of Seattle but all I accomplished was getting to the university area and pulling into a parking lot with a place called Spa Envy to look up how to get back to the house. Oh, and earlier that day I got off at an exit because I turned North instead of South on the highway and wanted to turn around and I happened to pass a Massage Envy so I pulled in and tried to get worked on but they were fully booked. I’ll have to get something done soon, though–my legs would greatly appreciate it. Driving hours on end–or doing any activity for hours on end–isn’t the best thing to do. 🙂 However, I feel great after walking around outside. Anyway, after driving through neighborhoods, accidentally turning down what I’m pretty positive was a one way street and then pulling into a driveway to turn around so I didn’t block traffic, and all sorts of driving adventures I made it back to Highway 5, having given up on getting to downtown Seattle today since I’ll be there tomorrow. I decided I wanted something warm and luckily I saw a Panera Bread advertisement on the exit before mine so I pulled off and got in the right lane for it, but I didn’t realize I had to turn left at the fork so I drove past it and the entire time my GPS is telling me to make a U-turn and I’m having a heated argument with it about how I want Panera and I won’t listen to it. I made myself laugh quite loudly with my little conversation and eventually I turned it off after I made a U-turn to get to Panera, not to get back to the highway. It was dark by the time I got there and I ordered my favorite Autumn soup and the Apple Crisp Salad or whatever it is. I’ve gotten them together before and it’s just such a yummy meal. 🙂

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Okay, now raise your hand if you know me and predicted that this might double as a food blog–you were right. 😉 Anyway, right after I took a picture of my food and started eating my (scalding) soup I saw a dog tied up alone outside. She (I think) was looking at me and then looking in the other windows. I thought about moving outside to sit with the dog but the cold and the fact that it would probably beg kept me inside. I did decide to go see it after I finished eating if no one went and got it first because I half expected that it belonged to someone eating inside. I finished eating and still the dog was there so after I put my dishes where they belonged I went outside to pet it but it was too excited for pets. She jumped on me and then brought me a big piece of mulch as if she wanted to play fetch. I obliged as best I could but the mulch broke and then she started chewing it so I kicked the pieces away from her so she wouldn’t get splinters. She was still too excited for me to pet her so I walked back to my car after saying good-bye. I wish it had been a proper stick so I could actually play with her, but earlier that day I had wanted to play with a dog and I ended up being able to. After that nothing much has happened–I got back home and I’ve been writing this blog post. 🙂 I hope you’re doing well and enjoying life, whomever you are and whatever you are doing! 🙂 Ta ta for now!

 

Oh! I almost forgot this little story. When I was driving back home on I-5 I got behind a car just like mine–bright blue and small and cute. It had a weird bumper sticker and I was trying to drive closer to figure out what it was. I thought it might be a moose or maybe a state outline–it was all dark. After trying to figure it out for a few minutes (and paying attention to driving) she got into the next lane and eventually I ended up beside her and a little behind her. As I was approaching I thought maybe it was a Disney princess silhouette like the one I have, only maybe Ariel or someone because it looked like there was flowing hair… and then I realized that it was a leaf. I laughed at myself so hard for spending so much time trying to figure out what it was when it wasn’t anything at all. It was worth a good laugh for me, though, so it was totally worth it. 🙂 I saw a picture of a moose–that’s what reminded me, and now I might remember this every time I see a moose and Ill have yet another reason to laugh.

 


Seattle: 10/28/15

Greetings from Seattle! I’m so happy to be here and today has been one of the most chaotic days–actually, today has been the most chaotic day since I left. It started out fine–I woke at 8 and had plenty of time so I removed my toenail polish to redo them purple. I wanted to do my fingernails purple, and I did, but it looked so lumpy and awful that I had to remove it. I did this and got ready and everything was ready to go by 10:30. I changed out my jewelry and dressed semi-nicely and all I had left to do was organize/finalize what I was taking to Seattle on the airplane since I wanted to bring at least some food and some beads to maybe make some jewelry with during my spare time. I did all that and left at about 11:20 to get to the airport which was only 14 minutes away–my flight time was 1:05 so that was plenty of time, or so I thought. Here’s a picture I took before I left:

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It was easy traffic getting to the airport and then came the part where I had to find parking. I kept following signs for Terminal 4 parking and getting lost and ending up in loops, or accidentally going through arrivals or departures and having to go 15 mph. Eventually I found parking on the outskirts of the airport, which was what my parents had suggested I do because it was cheaper parking, but there was no shuttle and there was no way I could walk by myself with two medium sized suitcases, a laptop, and my carry on all the way to the airport entrance (especially since I didn’t know the way–there were too many parking garages in the way). I drove to the exit and went to the one that wasn’t open on accident and then the woman in the open booth told me to go to a certain lot and I put my ticket in and left. Well, there was a fork in the road and there was a sign pointing to terminal 4 to the right and a sign up the hill that had an arrow pointing in the same direction with the name of the lot she wanted me to park in, so I went right twice looking for it. One of those times I decided I was running out of time and I could just pay a higher fee so I went to Terminal 4 parking, but when I got close enough to read the sign it said up to $25 per day so I went up into the parking garage and made my way slowly to the exit where I told the person I was looking for a certain lot and they helped me. Eventually, after over half an hour of driving circles around the airport, I realized that I had to go to where the sign was at the fork and turn there instead and I found it. I was looking for parking when I saw a sign that said “Early Bag Check In” and I turned around and went there. They were helping someone so I waited a minute then asked if it had to be 90 minutes like their sign said or if that were just preferred, but it was the rule so I couldn’t drop off my bags. I tried to park in the garage but it was $2 more per day and I don’t care if my V8s get a little hot so I backed out and found open parking and then dragged my suitcases to the shuttle stop. I was on my phone trying to see the shuttle schedule to see if I should just walk when it appeared and I was the only passenger. I told the man I was running late and he kindly told me how to get on the shuttle once he dropped me at the terminal. The airtram or whatever it was came about three minutes after I got there and once we arrived at terminal 4 I had to find the check in desk. I walked around at first because I expected it to be on that floor, but I was pressed for time so I asked a man at the information center and he told me to go to the first floor so I did. I was there looking past baggage claim to see if there were a check in desk when the man caught up with me and told me he’d sent me to the wrong floor and accompanied me up to the second floor where I power-walked to the line for Southwestern. I got in line and I wasn’t asking anyone to get in front of them or anything because I was hoping it would go quickly, but when a man who worked there walked by I told him my flight left in twenty minutes and asked if he could help and I burst into tears–probably frustration from not being able to park for so long and not wanting to miss my flight since I’ve never missed one before and I didn’t want my trip to get cancelled without getting a refund because I didn’t know how those things worked. He took me to the front and I checked in and the woman told me my bags would have to be put on standby for a later flight and I told her that was fine so she gave me my boarding pass and after 5 or more minutes of waiting for them to weigh my bags and make arrangements I power-walked (I tried running at one point, but with two bags and a crappy bra it wasn’t happening) to security and there was a short line but a man in front of me asked if I had made the flight. I told him I didn’t know yet and everyone on my side let me in front of them–I thanked them and shoved my shoes, computer case, and purse/bag into the bins and got in line for the metal detector machine. There was a problem scanning and older lady and I stood there a minute or two before another guy beckoned us through a regular metal detector. I got through the line and a woman who worked there was holding my laptop and I asked if there was something wrong. Apparently they have to be out of their cases so she told me she had to check my bag. I asked her the time and it was 12:57 and I told her my flight left at 1:05 and started crying. She told me it was okay, that I was right by the gate and I had plenty of time and I thanked her as she finished with my computer and I walked off to gate C8. I got there and the screen said Seattle: 1:05 and there were people sitting around so I figured they hadn’t started boarding yet and I was safe.

At this point I knew I should eat so I walked back a little go see if there were anything I could grab, but there was nothing I had time for so I just ran to the bathroom and went back but when I got back the screen had changed even though there were still people sitting around. I went to ask a woman who worked there and she said that the flight had already left. I didn’t exactly snap at her, but I said, “What do you mean? They just had it on the sign and they were just opening the door! All I did was go to the bathroom for a minute.” I started crying again and apologized, telling her I had thought I’d made it in time but she looked at my ticket and told me that by the time I got there (1:03) the plane had already been pulling out and since I checked in so late my name wasn’t even on the list so they didn’t know I was missing. She offered a hug, which I took happily, and told me to go let some other people know and that they would put me on standby for the next flight. I did that and they told me there were 42 (answer to the life, the universe, everything!) seats left and I was sure to get on. It was 2 and a half hours later, so I went and looked at all the food options. There was a PB&J for SIX DOLLARS! I shopped around and got a Starbucks Butterbeer (the cold one– you have to give them the recipe) to calm myself down.

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After that I knew I needed food as well so I decided where to go and asked the woman at the counter if I should get the burger or the cheese pizza. They were both about $10 and she told me to go with the burger so I did and it was a good choice, plus the fries were the skinny fries with the perfect crunch. ^_^ I went and got a boarding pass for the new flight and sat down to eat and I had a small conversation with Sam before Ashley called to ask about my flight. We chatted for a while and when we hung up I talked to the two ladies sitting near me. They were both friendly and it was nice to chat. The one who was in a wheelchair (not permanently, but because carrying her bags was too much for her scoliosis) offered to save me a seat on the plane and when we boarded she had saved me a middle seat and I told her I appreciated it but I’d rather not be squished. The man in the row in front of her said “Being squished is going to happen,” to which I replied that there were at least 40 empty seats. I chose aisle 13 hoping that fewer people would want to sit there due to superstition, and once I sat down I realized it was right over the wing so there wasn’t as good of a view but that was okay. A man named Jim took the aisle seat and put his bag in the middle seat. We managed to keep the row to ourselves and I introduced myself with “Hello, Seat Mate! I’m Courtney.” We chatted for a little bit about Phoenix and Seattle and I told him about my road trip and he told me a little about his life and showed me a video of Seattle in the summer. We kept to ourselves for the most part after that; he was on his phone and I was COLORING! He did tell me I was talented, which was kind of him. Here are some pictures:

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The first is my natal chart, but I chose colors that were too dark to make it easy to read–whoops. The second is just something that came to me–I knew I wanted to draw something spiritual, so that’s what happened. The third is the one he complimented–it’s a depiction of me holding a snake and a butterfly with a bat flying overhead. All of those animals are associated with death and rebirth or transformation, which correlates well with Pluto. I’m all about animal totems. <3 Anyway, the last is the cover of the notebook and it’s the “fancy” symbol for Pluto because this is all about my Pluto Transits and the others are the planets arranged as they are in my natal chart. 🙂

So after landing I contacted Raven, the woman I’m staying with, and let her know I was coming as soon as I got my rental car. Getting my bags was easy and they were both there, then I went outside to where the rental car signs were but there was nothing there except a group of smokers that I considered approaching to ask if they were the car rental people but I’m glad I didn’t because I saw a shuttle pull up with a neon sign advertising “Car Rentals” so I hurried on board. I sat next to a woman who was late for a meeting she was hosting because the flight had been delayed twenty minutes but she was really friendly and I enjoyed talking to her. She’s a retired nurse who now sells a product that causes the body to produce the same levels of something or other that we produce as children and she said it helps reverse aging and gets rid of the underlying causes of disease. I wanted to tell her about Mom and Mom’s happiness research, but since she was coming at it from a technology and chemical approach and the bus ride ended before I got a chance I figured it was okay because now I can tell Mom about her instead and Mom can look into the technology and decide if she’s interested in communicating with her. She said she had about 10,000 people under her so I’m sure if I remember the name of the product I could find out who she was since I don’t think we exchanged names. She reminded me of Mom a little.

Anyway, at the car rental place I went up to get my car and they needed a credit card. I asked if they could use my debit but apparently they just use it to hold the car until you drop it off, so I called to activate my credit card since I’ve never used it before. Well, long story short I spoke to a friendly girl named Kate from Salt Lake City and after going through the process she told me that my card had been activated in July, so Dad must have done it and I didn’t know so the stickers were still on it. I was able to get set up and I went down to where the cars were and a nice guy led me to the selection. He first offered me a red car and I told him I would be paranoid because statistics show that cops pull over red cars more frequently, so he pointed and said, “What about that brown one?” I thought it was funny that I was being prudish about cars and for a second I briefly thought, “Maybe I’d like the red one” but I think I made the right decision because I ended up with a nice black car with a back up mirror and the start button. I just have to remember to take the keys with me when I get out of the car, since I’m not used to it. He showed me how to do a few things and I put my Chicago soundtrack in since there wasn’t an Aux place for my iPod. I rolled out of there and then realized I hadn’t programmed my GPS so I pulled over and while sitting there I realized that my lights weren’t on–I’d thought they were automatic, so I played with the buttons and found that it was standard, just a weirder shape than mine. Finally I hit the road and driving past Seattle when it was all lit up was beautiful. I do love city lights, even though I think I’d prefer to live somewhere surrounded by nature instead. Flying at night has always been something I really enjoy because of how pretty I find the cities at night. I’ve always wanted to sit at an airport at night to watch planes come and go, but I’ve never done it. Anyway, I got here safely and met Raven and I already love her–I’m excited to be here for the next few days.

 

I haven’t written about much aside from what’s actually happened until now, but I think today is a perfect example of Law of Attraction. Most days are decent examples, but the way things kept escalating and going back and forth because I had split energy really demonstrated it. The more frustrated I became, the more frustrating experiences I drew to me. For example, on the plane the guy in front of me kept adjusting and throwing his weight into the seat. I was coloring and it was frustrating me and he had headphones on so unless I tapped him I wouldn’t be able to get his attention and I didn’t want to do that. When I finished drawing I decided to read in my astrology book and write down summaries of the transits I’m going through (which I’ll also do here, once I finish writing it) and I decided to cross my leg and press my knee against his chair so he couldn’t shove it back by adjusting anymore. As I was doing that I read about how one of my transits might cause me to get into power struggles–which is what I was doing with the guy in front of me who had been constantly jostling my tray. The power struggle wasn’t law of attraction based, but drawing that into my experience was probably residual from the earlier frustration. I could feel myself growing agitated and worried as I drove around the airport so many times so I just kept playing my new favorite song on repeat–it’s ONE of my new favorites and it’s Sebastian from the Little Mermaid singing “You got to be you! I got to be me! It’s simple but true, what else could you do, who else could you be?” It’s a kid’s song, but I LOVE IT! It’s not on YouTube so I’ll put it on my computer when I get back to my car (I left it in the CD player). Anyway, I was trying to change my vibration with the upbeat singing of my favorite crab and maybe that is part of what caused the good experiences, like the man offering to let me go ahead and then everyone else offering as well, and the woman in the wheelchair offering to buy me food (for no reason other than that I watched her stuff a few times), and a few other things. Obviously I had a dominant vibration of frustration, but once I found out I’d missed my flight I tried to relax by getting some food and treating myself and I think I was able to feel better and draw better things. I did get a great seatmate, I finished coloring and got some astrological writing finished, and I safely and successfully navigated the highway to get to this lovely room with a comfy bed and beautiful painting and even a chaise lounge, which I’ve ALWAYS loved (probably because of Princess Jasmine’s bedroom). I’m observing my experiences to analyze what I’m attracting into my life and maybe I should start accepting more favors–Mom keeps telling me that if someone wants to pay for me or do something for me I should allow it and maybe I should start letting others do things for me more frequently. Anyway, it’s now 11 here which is 2 am in NC and I’m trying not to get too acclimated to the time differences so that returning won’t be an issue, but since I’ll be spending almost a week with Brittany I suppose I’ll readjust then.

Have a wonderful night! 🙂


Sedona and Phoenix: 10/27/15

Happy full moon, everyone! This morning I didn’t get out of my hotel until about five minutes before check out–I was repacking my suitcases and organizing everything so I’m prepared for my flight to Seattle tomorrow. Oh, I didn’t mention that until now? I’m going to Seattle! I decided to cut Boulder for various reasons (snow was a big one– too many people were concerned about my car doing well if there were snow in the mountains of Colorado) and to save my car the miles and shave some time off my trip I found a cheap one way flight and a cheap rental car so I’ll be in Seattle for a few days and then I’ll be driving south to visit some people in Oregon and possibly California before I pick up my car in Phoenix and drive back across the country to Tennessee to visit some more friends before I make my way home.

So by the time I got to Sedona it was almost noon and I had only eaten 5 dried apricots and a V8 so I went AGAIN to the Wildflower for lunch. Y’all ready for this? Dun! Dun dun dun DUN! You know the tune, I hope… anyway, it’s a food picture!

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I also used the panoramic view for the first time, so here is the view from the Wildflower area of Uptown Sedona!

Day 9 fHere are a few other pictures of the view:

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Anyway, I walked around all of uptown and there was a bee trapped in Earthbound trying to get out the glass window. I watched for a few minutes before asking if I could use a cup to trap it and move it outside–I had a small window in which I could have tried, but it was between a big shelving unit and the window and since I’m allergic I hesitated and then it fell and I couldn’t get to it, so I’m hoping it found its way out one way or another. <3 I love bees for the most part.

So after the bee adventure I went through lots of crystal shops and went to Jenny’s Gypsy Closet or something similar and there’s no website but she gave me her card–we talked a little and she goes to Nepal to get some of the clothes made and I loved almost everything in the store so I plan to go back at some point.

After a simple dinner I went to ChocolaTree to have drinks and it was different than I remembered–the layout, but also how it was. There weren’t oracle cards on the tables anymore and they’d expanded and it looked nice, but they no longer had homemade kombucha (not that I could find) which was the main thing I’d wanted to get so I had hot spiced Chai tea and sat outside with all the fairy lights, crystals, and hammock. There’s a place for aerial silk shows set up outisde by the stage and there were more chairs and tables, so it looks like they’re really popular which is great. It was still a bit pricey, but for organic food I suppose the prices aren’t actually too much. A bottle of kombucha was $8, though, so I’ll let you be the judge–it’s all high quality, though. I would at least go there once and if nothing else get some chocolate. 🙂 My phone was dead so sadly I got no pictures of ChocolaTree–I need to keep my phone from dying by evening.

Tonight is the full moon and I had planned to be in Sedona on this date to go to the drum circle at Cathedral Rock they normally have on the full moon but after night had fallen it was too cloudy to really see the moon and I was chilly and getting sleepy with a two hour drive looming ahead of me, so I decided not to try to find it in the dark alone. Whenever I return I probably won’t be alone so I’ll share that experience with whomever I bring–being here without anyone to visit or hike with (since I agreed not to hike alone while I was here) and having nowhere to stay in the area takes away from the experience, but only a little bit. I’ve still been enjoying myself but this was a test drive to see how I would like traveling Europe if I decide to go alone and I’m currently of the opinion that travel alone is great to an extent but it would be better to have someone to share it with. We’ll see how I feel by the end of this.

So anyway the drive was uneventful but when I got to my hotel I got checked in, put one thing in the room, and went back to my car to get some more stuff. A guy had just walked out ahead of me to smoke and I could feel that he was going to approach me and maybe I should have just kept walking or gotten in my car and moved it to a new parking spot but I got my stuff out and just as I had felt would happen he walked a little closer and asked what music I liked. “Weird Al Yankovic” was my only answer. I didn’t really feel like talking but he wasn’t asking anything that made me uncomfortable, so when he asked if that was it I told him I also listened to Celtic and Pagan music that celebrates the earth. I was gathering the things I needed and he was still talking to me but I was being curt without being downright rude, so I told him good night and tried to open the door back to the hotel but it wasn’t working with my key so then he tried and it wouldn’t open so I walked around to the front of the hotel. He power-walked ahead of me and went to the front desk and then I went back to my room. The first thing I did was check the lock and the safety lock was broken–the little ball that gets caught was knocked off so I went downstairs to ask for a new room. The girl working the front desk was named Dallas and she had a replacement part but when she came to my room to try to replace it one of the screws wasn’t coming out so she switched me to the fourth floor where the rooms had just been renovated, so it worked out pretty well. 🙂 After I moved all my stuff I went and moved my car closer to the entrance. When Dallas was helping with the lock I told her that the guy downstairs had followed me from my car and had been badgering me when I obviously didn’t want to talk and she told me he was drunk–apparently when he went into the building in front of me it was to ask which room was his and he’s done that several times now. So now I know which room number to avoid and I won’t have to go near it to get to my car, plus Dallas said that if he kept coming out and forgetting his room she was going to kick him out so he didn’t disturb anyone. Anyway, she told me that if I wanted I could come down and chat since she would be there until midnight so after settling down in my room I went down to talk. She got really busy checking people in so I just looked at the brochures and there’s one for skydiving that I considered–I mean, it would be an experience! There are also hot air balloon rides but I’d want to do that with someone instead of alone–they probably wouldn’t let me go alone anyway. When she had some time we chatted about where we were from, where we wanted to go in life, and a few other things but then I finally decided to go to bed and here I am typing this blog.

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Here is my newly renovated room–I went from no fridge to a fridge and the floors were carpet in the other room. It’s a nice renovation based on the contrast between this and my first room. 🙂 Anyway, I’m exhausted. Have a great night!

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Sedona: 10/26/15

Bonjour, mes amies! So last night I slept in my car and didn’t get much sleep. I woke up early and it was cold so I was planning to just get dressed and go but after brushing my teeth in the heated bathroom I decided I could chance taking a shower without freezing. I didn’t bring sandals so I just wore a pair of socks to protect my feet, but I had no way to dry them so I just laid them on my towel (which I only packed because a hitchhiker/traveler always needs a towel! It’s a reference–I’m not actually hitchhiking.) to dry in my car. Anyway, the drive from Cottonwood/Verde Valley back to Sedona was nice and I went to the coffee house I used to visit with friends from massage school but that as well as the grocery store had been bought out by Whole Foods and I lost my interest. I did want to check out Whole Foods to see if it was basically the same as before (I’m pretty positive it used to be named something else) and it was so I bought a BROWN COW yogurt for breakfast and some salmon dip because I love salmon and it’s supposed to help release endorphins. I love this brand–Bri introduced me and there’s a cream top which makes it even better. 🙂

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After I got some food I went up to the lookout again where I could eat my yogurt and enjoy the view. About halfway through my yogurt a guy with a sign asked me to take a photo of him and he told me a lot about himself. He is from the East Coast, too, but he flew out about a week ago and has been traveling around AZ sleeping out of his car. He was really talkative, but I didn’t really mind since he was mostly talking about travel. Eventually he left and then a bus of tourists came and I spoke briefly to a lady from there before throwing away my trash and driving down the hill to park at the Airport lookout and climb up. It’s been a long time since I went hiking–it was harder than I remember, but maybe part of that was my heavy backpack and the fact that I was wearing long, flowy robes over my dress. By the time I got up there it was too warm so I took off my outer layer and sat in the sunlight. I had second breakfast/brunch and ate the salmon dip I bought–it wasn’t a huge amount, but I have no way to keep things cold so I figured I’d eat it before it went bad. (The one from Trader Joe’s is better, by the way.) I spent some time taking MORE pictures and contacting some people about where I was going.

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And I got a Snap from Ashley, my sister, and it was Albuquerque playing in the background with her telling me that Weird Al was on the radio!

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I was excited. 🙂

After that I went and checked out some of the thrift stores and found a place where I could buy a single lavender soda. I have a pack of four at home but I hadn’t tried them because I was saving them for a special occasion, so I got one and it was pretty yummy.

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As you can see, it was a magical experience. 😉 Also it was really sunny.

Anyway, there were two cats snuggling on some furniture in one of the thrift shops I went into and my phone was dead or I’d have taken a picture. There was an orange and white one (my favorite type of cat since that’s what Prince looked like and he was my favorite cat growing up) and a grey tabby–the orange one let me pet it but the grey one seemed more interested in sleep than pets. They were really sweet and I found two CDs there. I got one with Italian love songs (I know I have eclectic taste, but I love foreign music. I just want to dance romantically to Italian music sometimes… one day.) and the other CD I got was Wicked and it was only two dollars–SCORE! (Get it–it’s a musical score and a score that I got it for so little? lol, I hope that’s not too forced. ^_~) I already have it on iTunes but I like having a physical copy if possible. After that I went and bought some beads at the bead shop and walked around Crystal Magic. I was going to stop by my old school to see the director, but class was still ongoing and I didn’t want to interrupt so I just spent tons of time looking at crystals.

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I had an early dinner soon after, or a late lunch–whatever you want to call it. I don’t want to be in restaurants when they’re too crowded and I’m still sort of on NC time anyway, so I went to the Red Planet Diner and I think it would be more fun to go at night, or maybe just to go sit at the bar and have a drink. It’s a super cool restaurant with a UFO in the ceiling and figures of all sorts of space or scientific people around the walls. Einstein was at my table and the first time I went there I had Spock and there’s a selfie of me with it somewhere. My phone was dying from not being able to charge it this morning except in the outlet in the bathroom at the campsite, so I didn’t get to take any pictures but I had the Roswell Burger. I hadn’t had a burger since before I left so I was in the mood. 🙂 After that I went to uptown and walked around a little before deciding that I didn’t want to sleep in my car again, especially since my family was more comfortable with me doing that if I paid to do it in a campground, so I figured it I were going to pay to stay somewhere it would be better to have a bed. I had to sit in my car to have any charge on my phone but I was able to book a hotel in Flagstaff and I’m staying at the same place I stayed before, in the same room since it was available and I asked for it. It brings some familiarity, you know? But the drive to Flagstaff is all uphill and full of 15 mph curves so I didn’t want to drive it after dark, especially with animals to consider, so I got a scone to go from Wildflower (I’m trying to enjoy it as much as possible–I’m saving ChocolaTree for tomorrow) and drove to my hotel. I was planning to check in and then go out but I’m tired from not sleeping well and I brought lots of stuff to do with me like beading and coloring and writing, so I decided to have an early night again, only this time with a bed. I’ve just been updating this blog and enjoying my giant scone with Halloween movies playing in the background.

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I know it’s weird, but I wanted to eat pickles with my scone but I’ve tried and I can’t open the jar. I’m going to keep trying because I brought this jar from Charlotte so I could eat pickles and now it’s become super important that I find a way to open the jar. Well, semi-important. It’s already too late for me to really want to eat much more so I’ve just been drinking cider. 🙂 Anyway, I don’t think much else is going to happen tonight and if it does I’ll write about it tomorrow! Have a great night. 🙂

 

 


Sedona: 10/25/15

I’m a day behind on posting, but I’ll try to remember all that happened yesterday. I spent a lot of time in my hotel room trying to figure out sleeping arrangements but all the hotel prices in Sedona are higher than they were last time I visited, probably because it’s high season and the only other time I stayed in a hotel in Sedona it was July and who wants to visit a desert in July? Ha ha, anyway, I drove down after making arrangements to sleep in the Thousand Trails campground in Verde Valley and I wish I’d set up my camera to film the drive down because it’s still one of the most beautiful drives I’ve ever had the pleasure of enjoying. ^_^ Since the breakfast my hotel offered didn’t really appeal to me all I’d eaten was a V8 (the tomato juice one, not the fruit kind) and a pumpkin granola bar I was hungry when I finally arrived and I went to my favorite restaurant from when I lived there: the Wildflower Bread company! It was incredibly busy and I got a salad and sat alone at a table scribbling my thoughts in a small notebook I picked up at Target earlier (I went to buy a sleeping bag). The outside seating has a gorgeous view and there’s also a fireplace with some comfy chairs inside; I really like the atmosphere and it reminds me a lot of Panera. I left my phone in the car so I didn’t take any pictures then.

After eating I went to the Airport lookout but there was no parking so I went all the way up and parked at the lookout where I took THESE photos:

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After taking pictures with my NEW selfie stick since I broke my other one at the Grand Canyon when my hands were too cold to hold it properly, I went and organized my car in the parking lot and tried to nap there for a little while but all I ended up doing was talking on the phone with Mom about getting a hotel before my flight. Honestly, I didn’t do much that day–I just spent time on top of the mountain looking out at the red rocks and enjoying the fact that I was finally back where I wanted to be, but without having a place to go or any friends in town it was different than I was expecting. It was both freeing and restricting, but overall it was good to be back. I went to the Wildflower Cafe again for dinner and got pumpkin soup and the guy recognized me from lunch. Lol, I know what I like. 🙂 Anyway, here is the view from the outside seating:

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And my dinner ^_~

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A little sparrow came and visited me while I was eating. It tried to eat something way too big for it and it kept picking it up and nibbling on it while shaking its head and it was super adorable. I love birds, so I’m probably biased. 🙂 Anyway, I decided to call it an early night because I didn’t want to find a place to sleep in the campground in the dark so I drove to the campsite and the woman at the front was walking up just as I arrived and I went into the office to check in and it turns out that she did something similar not that long ago–she sold her house, bought an RV, and drove around the countryside before deciding to live in AZ. It was awesome and I’m really glad I had the encounter with her that I did. She told me that sleeping in cars wasn’t technically allowed and she would put a note in my file so no rangers would disturb me and she recommended that I bring a flashlight and some keys to jangle when I go to the bathroom so the Havelina would leave me alone. Havelina are small wild boars native to Sedona and in the five months I lived there before, walking alone at night fairly often, I only saw them once but after walking back to my car from the bathroom without a flashlight right after sunset I heard something in the bushes by my car and freaked myself out a little, so later when I woke up in the middle of the night and needed to use the bathroom (because I went to bed at 7, which is 10 NC time) my phone was dead and my flashlight had no batteries so I decided to wait for the sunrise. On top of that, I was cramped in the back of my car next to my suitcases and laying on my side was rough on my hips so it was a sleepless night. The moon was gorgeous, though. And now I’ve slept in my car at least once on this trip, even though I paid to do it in a campsite. So… I probably won’t do that again. Anyway, have a great night!


Grand Canyon: 10/24/15

Instead of going down to Sedona today as I had planned I decided to take a detour and go see the Grand Canyon for the first time. It was only an hour and a half or so past Flagstaff and it was just as beautiful as I’d expected. Next time I go I want to go on a mule or horseback ride, and it would probably be more fun to go with someone but I had fun seeing it by myself this time. 🙂 I’d probably have fun alone on a horseback ride but you get a deal if you go with two people, plus there are overnight trips and it just seems that sort of thing would be more fun with someone. ^_^

Anyway, I spent the morning enjoying my nice hotel room last night and it took me almost the full length of the movie Corpse Bride to leave–possibly because I was watching it as I ate breakfast in my room before I started packing up for the day. I didn’t leave until 10:30 and I didn’t stop for more than a few short trips for gas or food or bathroom. I got to Flagstaff at a good time and I looked up the sunset time in AZ so I could go see the Grand Canyon in time for the sunset because if it would be dark before I got there it wouldn’t be as visible, but I had enough time to get there about ten minutes before the sunset. I made my way and then realized that I’d passed another time zone and I had an extra hour so when I saw this rock shop gas station, I stopped to look around and fill up.

Day 6 bbThere was a giant rock salt lamp that caught my eye, but the prices were a little high for me and I couldn’t justify buying a heavy rock to add to my full car. There was a table outside with some petrified wood chairs that felt awesome so I took a picture. Here are some things I saw there. If you’re in the area I’d check it out.

Day 6 cc Day 6 dd

Day 6 ee Day 6 ff

This was about 20 minutes from the entrance to the Grand Canyon. I could have probably guessed that there would be a fee but I didn’t think about it beforehand, so now I have a pass that’s good for seven days but I don’t think I’ll be making it back in that time period. Now I know for the future, though!  I saw some deer before I got to the first viewpoint and then I walked around taking pictures and sitting looking out over the landscape. I added two layers and some gloves but before the gloves my hands got a little numb and I accidentally broke my selfie stick so now I have to go get another one but they were only $3.50 at Wal-Mart so it’s not a big deal. 🙂 I really want to be able to have one for taking pictures in Sedona and the other places I’ll be visiting. 🙂 Anyway, here’s a sea of pictures!

Day 6 x

Day 6 b  Grand Canyon a Day 6 a Grand Canyon cDay 6 j Grand Canyon dDay 6 f Grand Canyon e Day 6 c         Day 6 kGrand Canyon f Day 6 l Day 6 mDay 6 o Day 6 n  Day 6 qDay 6 p   Day 6 u

And these ones are just for those of you who like looking at my face. ^_~ You know who you are!

Day 6 e Day 6 g Day 6 h Day 6 i Day 6 d

Day 6 s Day 6 t Day 6 v Day 6 w Day 6 r

And now I’m finally going to work on writing a post that isn’t just pictures about my trip–I’m in my hotel room for the night with Hocus Pocus playing on the TV in my room and I can relax. Tomorrow I’ll be off to Sedona! Have a great night.


Driving Fort Smith to Albuquerque: 10/23/15

What better way to celebrate Weird Al’s birthday than to spend the night in ALBUQUERQUE? I didn’t realize that until just now, actually–I wore my Weird Al shirt from the last concert I went to and had a cake pop from Starbucks in his honor and that’s all I was planning, but this is great. 🙂

Anyway, I’m in my hotel for the night and nothing too crazy happened today. I drove most of the day and stopped in Oklahoma City at a Starbucks for the “Butterbeer” coffee and a cake pop and when I got to the hotel I used the Jacuzzi and then decided to film an incredibly short ASMR video that I may never post if the quality isn’t good. My hotel room has a trifold mirror in the bathroom and I wanted to try using it. Anyway, here are some pictures!

 

Day 5 f  Day 5 dDay 5 e

tub

It’s late, so happy birthday, Weird Al! Good night! 🙂


Driving Huntsville to Fort Smith: 10/22/15

The morning of my fourth day of travel I set an alarm to wake up in time to say farewell to Bess before she left for work and since the time zone is different I wasn’t sleepy enough to go back to bed after talking to her during her breakfast. I made hot tea and hot water to melt my honey in my vinegar/honey drink and packed the car, ate some of the food I brought with me (I’m starting to realize that I probably brought too much since I’m probably not going to eat all of it over a month. We’ll see!) and drove off into the unknown. After a while I had finished my drinks and I was looking for a place to stop so I saw a sign for two state parks and on a whim I got off the interstate. One was to the left and one was to the right so I chose the one to the right–it was the JP Memorial Park or something similar. It was eleven miles away and I almost gave up because I would be losing so much time but finally I arrived and there was a small stream over the drive leading to the park. After all the flooding in South Carolina and the flood advisories I was wary so I tried to call my mom but I had no signal. I looked at it and it wasn’t even an inch deep so I took a deep breath and went for it–no problems whatsoever. And it was totally worth it because once I got to the park I saw that there was a huge lake with people loading and unloading boats and it was gorgeous. I had bought a pomegranate the night before and I took it with me to find a nice place to sit. I explored and decided to avoid the picnic benches and go sit on the rocks where I thought I had seen two men fishing but when I got there I saw a sign saying “KEEP OFF ROCKS” so since I’m basically Hermione Granger when it comes to rules I went and found a spot on the grass overlooking the lake. I was tempted to film a little ASMR video since it’s been a long time, but as soon as I finished eating this long boat started crossing the lake and it was louder than the others so I opted to get back on the road. Anyway, here are some pictures because it was SO PRETTY!

prettyI LOVE this picture of myself. 🙂 It was really bright outside.

aim food  selfie stop lake water

I’m still getting the hang of the selfie stick. I’m pretty sure I amused the guys who waved at me while they were fishing since watching someone use a selfie stick must look pretty silly to onlookers. 🙂

Anyway, then after another few hours of driving it got really hot even though I had the AC going strong so I stopped at a gas station that had a Dairy Queen. I promised myself that I would have ice cream at least once on this trip but the chocolate dipped cone wasn’t as satisfying as I was hoping, so if it’s hot in Sedona I might get some ice cream to take hiking with me. 🙂

ice cream

Anyway, the GPS took me on a windy back road to avoid traffic so it was about 8:30 when I finally got to Fort Smith, AR. I stopped at this cute little well-lit Wal-Mart and they had aloe water and Honest Tea! They had all sorts of health food stuff that my local Wal-Marts don’t carry, so the Wal-Mart next to GuestHouse Inn is now my favorite of all Wal-Marts. Oh, and this was outside:

thief

He reminds me a little of the Thief from Thief and the Cobbler, but he also reminds me of the Humbug from Phantom Tollbooth. And maybe something else. 🙂

Anyway, after some confusion with the hotels I ended up staying at the GuestHouse Inn and it was a cute little place–the girl who helped me when I first got there was great and I had my little dinner from Wal-Mart upstairs in my room while watching HGTV since there was no wifi.

dinner

And then I had a great night’s sleep after watching a Hercules cartoon on my phone. And now I’m in the midst of day 5, so I’ll update again either tonight or tomorrow when I get to Sedona!