Five Weeks In: Road Trip Update!

Happy St Patrick’s Day everybody!

I’m finding it a bit challenging to write a blog post right now, because my whole head feels as though it’s filled with rocks… Wading my way through neck-deep Structuralism in my Literary Theory subject at uni has put me firmly in struggletown, and I have some mild regret about choosing this particular subject. Regardless, we are currently motoring our way down the interstate and leaving Utah behind as we head towards Bryce Canyon to see some rocks!

I hope everyone enjoyed James’s excellent post last week: I don’t think it was until after he had finished the long slog that he realised just how much pain and time goes into writing a blog post… Especially when one has been doing as much travelling as the two of us! Luckily, this one won’t be quite as long, because we’ve spent our last week in Utah, which means that (hopefully!) there’s less to tell.

We arrived in Utah at about midday on Saturday to meet up with some friends of James’s dad. They were, hardly surprisingly, enjoying the stunning slopes of Park City so we killed some time studying and reading in a beautiful little bookshop. Foolishly, I decided to have a delicious hot chocolate, obviously forgetting the propensity of my body to rapidly heat up to the same temperature as the surface of the sun during/after consuming any vaguely warm beverage. Normally that probably wouldn’t be a problem when hanging around a ski resort, but it appears the weather gods (or the irrefutable and undeniable advance of global warming across the face of the earth) had smiled upon us, because it was warm and sunny. Great for t-shirt weather, not so great for my core temperature.

Hot tub shenanigans!

We headed towards the St Regis just after 2pm to meet up with Mike and Sabrina for cocktails, which was wonderful, though I felt a little underdressed. We had a wonderful time chatting with them and drinking some tasty alcoholic beverages before getting the not-so-subtle ‘time to leave’ from the staff, who were setting up an event on the deck. Mike and Sabrina graciously invited us to come up and spend some time at their chateau and meet their daughter (and her large bevy of friends), so we headed up there and spent some time eating snacks, having some drinks and enjoying the hot tub, which had a ‘make a snow angel in your togs’ requirement for any first timers. Bit chilly, but all in all a lot of fun and we had a great afternoon/evening. Our drive down to Salt Lake City to book into our hotel was a little perilous—I said to James afterward that, as the driver, I’d never felt so close to death—but we finally got in and then crashed out hard. [Possibly not the best choice of phrasing there.]

Luckily, the next day was fairly low-key, with some studying, some reading and some last-minute bookings for a couple of days in the next leg of the trip before we headed up to Snowbird! We had a wonderful 3 days of snowboarding over Monday-Wednesday, though I will freely and openly admit that my physical endurance is far below that of both my family and James. Despite some white-hot calf (and later quad) pain, and some truly fantastic and memorable falls in every possible direction on some pretty well-packed and icy snow, we managed to have an absolutely wonderful time. Probably doesn’t hurt that the family we were there with are all a lot of fun to hang out with (we had an awesome time playing a cool game called Linkee that I’m now keen to buy for home). As well—relaying this information for the good of humanity—there have been multiple dog sightings (and interactions!) during our snow trip, which is always guaranteed to put me in a good mood. We also completed a monster puzzle which has rekindled my love of puzzles: seriously, it was a guts effort.

The incredible bluebird day view from the top.

The view of us at the top!

We spent most of yesterday studying (me) and reading (James) before going for a bit of a wander around the lower edges of the mountain. Despite the patches of snow and some sinking in on while we were walking, it was absolutely beautiful. We even spontaneously decided to strip down to our underwear and have a dip in the icy cold Little Cottonwood Creek (mostly decided by James really, I just went along with it for the funsies).

Adventure James climbed a tree

We’re really looking forward to some of the crazy adventures facing us in the next week or so: we’re going to hike around Bryce Canyon and take some sweet photos, visit Vegas, the Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam… The list goes on! I’m hanging stubbornly on with uni and think I’m getting some cool story ideas (we will see!). You’re all welcome for this being a shorter post. See you next week!

–Ana.

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