It’s never what’s on my mind

While I wish I could sit down and tell you exactly what’s on my mind – how crazy, exciting, frustrating, exhausting my day-to-day has become – I can’t.

It’s not because I want to keep things private (although I do) or that I can’t find the time (although I can’t).  It’s that I lack the ability to communicate something without a buffer or a break or a bonus round.  What’s going on with me RIGHT NOW?  Ummm…

Yeah.  I sit in front of this blank screen and just…blank.  It all seems boring and piddley and whiney.

Instead, let me share that a month or so ago Tom and I went on vacation.

It was only the second vacation we’ve taken where the point was us.  It feels indulgent and – as I try to plan Chicago since my father is having surgery again – foolhardy.  A whole week?  Just to be together?  Whatever can we do?

Turns out, quite a bit.

We flew in to Las Vegas, spending 4 nights there then driving to the Grand Canyon for 3 nights and returning to Vegas in time for one more buffet and a flight out.

First off, Las Vegas is so not my type of place.  I’ve cared for cats from shows.  I’ve seen the conditions.  I know the trade and cruelty that is perpetuated by even the best caregivers just by fact of displaying them.

It’s also not my place because it is so over the top.  Vegas is disposable and luxurious.  I am canvas bags and frugal.

But…I still loved it. 

We saw 3 shows, gambled a little, and used our jacuzzi every day.  I must say, for all the hype, Zumanity is much tamer than I expected.  Perhaps because this is one area where I am definitely NOT frugal.  Ahem.  But it was still a great show.

Also, as someone who thinks finding good places to eat as a top priority on vacation while Tom is more of the “Is that McDonald’s I see?  It’s cheap and quick!” vacationer, Las Vegas was perfect for us.  We ate several meals at buffets – usually making the meal stretch over the day so as not to seem too piggish.  He couldn’t resist the bargin of a buffet, I couldn’t resist the fact that there is no such thing as bad food in Vegas.  The only thing I found lacking is that I don’t believe you can get great Italian food at a buffet.

After 3 days, we were off to the Grand Canyon.  Where we promptly fell in love with the view, bought peanut butter and bread to make all-day hike preparations, and hit a brick wall.

I’m scared of heights.

And, like a few of my other fears (frogs), it’s one I never really think will rear it’s head.  I mean, sure I quiver when I climb and enclosure to clean off the roof and I curse a bit on ladders.  But, am I REALLY scared?

Evidently, the answer is yes.  Yes I am.

Our first afternoon, we struck off to do a small section of trail to get a good sense of our timing so we’d know how far we could go the next day.

I got maybe 6 yards down the trail.

I got another 12 yards before I made us turn back.

This was a little less than the 12 miles we were planning.

I was so distraught.  I can’t believe I’d planned a vacation to the Grand Canyon and couldn’t even hike!  However, I also didn’t feel like putting myself through pain and hell was exactly what a vacation should be about.

We decided to go down the trail we wanted to hike and see how I felt about those conditions.  It wasn’t much better at first.  There was a large turn at the first switchback and you couldn’t see around it and I couldn’t get over the mental block.

But then, as we were looking around the area thinking we wouldn’t be back the next day, we found an alternative way to the trail head – one past that first turn.

I’m not sure why it got easier for me, but it did.  We hiked enough to determine that we’d make a go of it the next day.

We made it 3 miles.  And I’m not pointing any fingers, but I wasn’t the one to turn us back.

And…that was it in a nutshell.  It was an incredible trip.  The combo of slot machines and canyons is one I definitely recommend.

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