A couple of weeks ago I turned off my computer. Some would call this a hiatus -- but I don't want to talk dirty. I considered it part of my vacation process. Another part of my vacation was to celebrate our wedding anniversary at a casino for a weekend to be greeted by a surprise anniversary party upon our return home. A second part of my vacation was to spend a few days in southwestern Utah.
I toured Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, Cedar Breaks National Monument, Kodachrome Basin State Park, and one aborted attempt at visiting the Escalante Grand Staircase. But at the moment my mind turns to Panguitch, Utah.
Like all folks in Utah, the citizens on this small town appear to be hard working, God fearing, kind and gentle folk. I landed there exhausted after conquering the wilds of the southwestern part of that fair state. In fact I can tell you the time that I plopped on the bed in the motel room. It was 4:49 pm, give or take an hour.
You see, before I landed in Las Vegas I had wisely set my watch back two hours which adjusts for the shift from Central to Pacific time. Then I drove north clipping Arizona into Utah and had spent two days touring wonderful sites. So my watch said it was 4:49 pm when I entered that motel room. I turned on the TV to see the local news and on the corner of the screen it said 5:49 pm. Boy did they screw up. I switched to another channel and there on the screen was 5:49 pm. In my exhausted state I pondered the possible explanations for this. Either the kind people of that part of Utah were in truth idiots, or I was living in the past, or I was in the Twilight Zone. It wasn't until the next day that it occurred to me that somehow, somewhere I might have slipped into another time zone.
I figured a quick shower was in order, then I could take a little nap. Yikes, the shower had no hot water! I called the nice gentleman at the front desk who was an Indian from India whom I couldn't understand and it was obvious he couldn't understand me. While I complained about no hot water he insisted on telling me the washing machines were located behind the office. I gave up and just curled up for a nap.
I awoke at 8:30 or 9:30 that evening starving. I jumped in the car to find a restaurant and drove from one end of town to the other and found four restaurants, all closed. Aha! The fifth one, Arby's, had a sign that said it was open but when I entered they told me they were closed. The effects of starvation began to hit and I went into desperation mode. Finally I spied a gas station with a little market inside....and I frantically roared through there grabbing a loaf of bread, bologna, a package of cheese, and a jar of mayonnaise. And a bag of Fritos. Just like the Morman settlers of that fair state, when faced with adversity I made do.
I am positive that the fine folks of Panguitch are wonderful, strong and kind people, but I probably won't be visiting them again.
Somewhere in my wandering I stumbled a little hole in the ground called Bryce Canyon. I took a picture or two.
Now it is kind of silly having these National Parks that you flock to when I figure all of southwestern Utah should be declared a National Park. Take a look at a non-National Park picture taken just driving along the road.
Cedar City is a wonderful clean town of about 10,000 folks. This is a small town that thinks it is big with wide streets, an University, a major fine arts program, wonderful restaurants and a myriad of fine shopping opportunities. West of Cedar City....about twenty miles straight up is Cedar Breaks National Monument. You know you have gone straight up because while it might be 105 degrees in Cedar City, it will be 70 degrees in the park. Cedar Breaks is a relatively small park and blessedly uncrowded....and a wonder to behold. Take a look.
These parks are internationally famous. If you don't believe me, just stand still and listen to the patrons talking. You can't understand a word. Being as perverse as I am, my favorite park is sort of unknown and pretty much unvisited. At this park, instead of looking down to see magnificence, you are in the magnificence and you can walk around and touch and climb. Kodachrome Basin is my place -- so don't tell anyone. We need to keep it private.
I'm back home now. My computer is on. Life is back to normal....a little tired but glad to be back where I belong. The area of Utah I was in is truly awe inspiring and I highly recommend visiting.....that is, everywhere but Kodachrome Basin.