Sunday, March 13, 2011

Road Trip Diary: Saturday, February 5th

Saturday we hit two iconic Route 66 stops -- the Wigwam Village, though it is not currently operating, so we didn't get to go in one; and the Jackrabbit Trading Post, where we did take turns getting our picture made sitting on the giant jackrabbit! Barring another souvenir/post card stop, we fairly well pushed through to get to Santa Clarita (north of LA) because Saturday was the longest leg of the trip (800 miles in a day!).

We got the giggles along the way because Brooke was determined to see real tumbleweeds while we drove across Arizona, and the longer she went without having seen one, the more she fussed about being out in the desert and not seeing tumbleweeds. Maybe you had to be there, but it was funny!  (PS: I swear, someone moved the western boundary of AZ as we drove, because we damn near never got into California...)

As we approached the state line, the sun was going down, and the sunset was absolutely amazing. (Once the keeper of the trip photos decides to share them with the group, I'll link the word 'sunset' to those photos!) A note to those of you who may someday follow the same path and take I-40 westbound, should you follow this from AZ into California, do yourself a favor, and stop for gas before you leave AZ. Not terribly far from the state line, there is a random sign that warns you that the next exit is the last chance to stop for 55 miles. And *POOF* out of nowhere, you are zooming past that exit.

And they are not kidding. There's no U-turn options, no exits without gas stations should you have car trouble, nothing. Something happens, all you can do is pull over or keep going straight. And the one gas station you finally reach out in BFE, California...insane price gouge. Be warned.

Anyway...once we reached civilization (Barstow), we stopped at a Bob's Big Boy for dinner, burgers and fries, of course. Back on the road, we still had another 140 miles to go. At about 9:00 PM. Lawd. But we FINALLY arrived at the Hyatt in Santa Clarita (swankadoo), though even that was not without a temporary scare.

We pulled up to see teenagers swarming around the place, all decked out in (what appeared to be) prom garb, and were briefly horrified at the idea that we would be in a room on a hall with a bunch of half-crazed, hormonal teenagers. Whether we had already been assigned a room, I don't know. But I asked the girl at the front desk, if it was possible, to please be put as far from them as possible, and we ended up in the far back corner of the top floor, where we slept in blessed peace and quiet. However it came to be, we were thrilled because we were too tired and probably would have been tossed out for kicking some teenage butts had they kept us up! :) 

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