Sunday, September 23, 2012

For the folks back home

Sabbatical update photo essay!  Huzzah!  I'm one week in on the big trip, and all is going super well.  I'm traveling this leg of the journey with my friend Liz, and we are getting along like peas in a pod.  Really, I even sing in the car in front of her.  We've been experiencing the blessings of the road, serendipity and hospitality and happenstance.  I'm writing right now from Durango, Colorado, and it's time for a quick tour of the trip to this point.

We had two great visits with friends in Pittsburg and Goshen, IN, but the photos only get interesting  once we cross the mighty Mississippi.
Then we had a great night in Iowa.  Really, all my preconceived notions of Iowa as a flat corn-riddled wasteland were shattered, it's a beautiful state full of rolling hills and big skies.  And llamas.  We stayed with Becky and Brian in their cool geodesic house and got up at the crack of dawn to walk the llamas in the Iowa sunrise.  I now love llamas.  Becky and Brian are fantastic hosts.
Even though I named my cat after Nebraska, the less said about this next leg the better.  We drove through a whole of stuff that looked like this.
But then we got to Colorado!  Spent a few days in Denver catching up with friends, work, dinosaur tracks, altitude and sleep.  And exploring Red Rocks!  You can see the famous amphitheater in the middle distance, and we also took a hike around through the rocks.  Bonus to the beauty was that a three-day Grateful Dead "Further" concert was about the start, and the place was hopping with a dose of Dead culture and it was pretty entertaining.

And then off through the mountains, where the aspens are peaking RIGHT NOW and the mountainsides are bursting with incandescent golden craziness.

Bonus serendipity was a random stop at a place called the Pony Espresso in Jefferson, CO, where the lovely women who own the shop decided on the spot to carry my notecards!  I can't fill the order until I get home, but am excited to have a presence in CO in such a sweet place.

Tomorrow, on to Mesa Verde (a life-long dream) and points west.

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