Here’s what I learned today: 1. the Grosse Pointe Blank soundtrack is really good; 2. I can’t remember this one; neither can Dave; and 3. Utah is prettier than Nevada.
We left Salt Lake City around 9:00 this morning headed for Green River, Utah. As we were leaving Salt Lake, we started listening to the Grosse Pointe Blank soundtrack. Ah the memories of the 1980s; you know what I mean: “When I’m a-walkin’ I strut my stuh-uff and I’m so strung out!” At one point I turned to Dave (figuratively rather than literally since I had to keep my eyes on the road) and asked if it makes me old to say that the music of the 80s is soooo much better than that crap the kids listen to today. Dave just smiled, or so I think because I couldn’t look at him. (You’re still singing, aren’t you?) Salt Lake City traffic, while nothing like Bay Area traffic, was still heavier than anything we had faced since leaving San Rafael and I needed to concentrate. But eyes on the road doesn’t necessarily mean hands on the wheel, and I know he didn’t appreciate my double dream hands to Under Pressure. (If you don’t know what I mean by double dream hands, have a look at this.)
I wish I could remember what the second thing I learned today was. I told Dave my list of things, but he can’t remember them either. It drove me crazy for a while, but it’s gone, and without a pensieve it’s not likely to return. So let’s pretend the second thing I learned today is that Salt Lake City will be hosting the annual Princess Festival from June 19-30. I wasn’t able to learn much about the festival from the giant billboards lining the freeway, so I Googled it. If you didn’t feel like clicking on the link, here’s what the website says about the festival:
A place of enchantment where Princesses learn to become everything they dream while making the world a better place.
Our mission is to touch the hearts of young girls and communities to empower them in acts of service, kindness, and courage through the creative engagement of imaginative characters, stories, and events.
This sounds much better than what I thought it would be–a baby beauty pageant with little girls all made up like creepy little dolls. I’m hoping we can check it out as we pass through on our way home, but we probably won’t be able to with Ralphie. I also don’t know if it’s open to gawkers.
As for item number three, Utah is prettier than Nevada, well, it just is. To be fair to Nevada, we had to drive by Reno, which depresses the crap out of me. When I moved to California in 1998, my friends David and Dan accompanied me from my dad’s house in Pennsylvania. We stretched the journey cross-country into a nine day road trip that included a brief stop for lunch in Reno. ( I think the plan had once included spending the night in Reno, but all three of us decided just to press on to Davis.) I hate casinos. Row after row of old people playing the slots; isn’t that depressing? I’ve never been to Las Vegas but I can only imagine that it is ten times worse. Anyway, the Nevada that lines 80 after sad Reno is barren, desolate wasteland with tire store clerks who insist that you should buy new tires now.
Utah also has some barren, desolate parts, but the rock formations that line those parts are spectacular. Here’s an example of what I mean:
See how blue the sky is? And how beautiful that big rocky thing in the background is? All morning we saw stuff like that. This picture hardly captures the amazing stuff we saw today.
But, also to be fair to Nevada, because we stuck to I-80, we only saw the tiniest bit of the state’s northern part. Samantha (the GPS) chose a more interesting route from Salt Lake City to Green River. Instead of taking I-15 to I-70 as AAA suggested, we followed Samantha’s instructions, which put us on US 6 / US 191. In other words, we meandered through a bigger cross-section of Utah.
On the other hand, prettier doesn’t mean much when you are a food snob looking for dinner. There is one grocery store in Green River and it didn’t have much in the way of prepared food. I think we’re going to be eating peanut butter on rice cakes for dinner. And that’s cool. Tomorrow we’re going to Glenwood Springs, CO; surely they’ll have snobby food places, right?
So there you go. That’s what I learned today on the drive from Salt Lake City to Green River. As you might have gathered from this post, I also learned how to put links and pictures into the text of my blog. If you are wondering why it took so long, it’s because I’m predisposed to resist all things technological. But now that I know how embarrassingly easy adding stuff to my blog is, there will be more pictures and links from now on. I promise.