A Day of Ear-Popping Fun . . .

This morning was another early one. That makes two in a row. This has got to stop.

The reason for this early start was that this was another road trip day, this time north to Flagstaff. So we left our rig about 8:40 to meet Nick and Terry in the parking lot of our favorite local Mexican place, La Fonda.

Our next stop was about 2 miles away for two fill-ups, Nick for gas, and all of us for a quick breakfast at the McDonalds next door. Then it was out onto I-17N heading for Flagstaff, a little over 50 miles away.

The trip was a really spectacular drive, especially when you take a curve and get your first glimpse of San Francisco Peaks that loom over Flagstaff.

San Francisco Mtns 1

This shot, taken in early April 2010, shows a little more snow.

San Francisco Mtns 2

Humphreys Peak, on the left, is over 12,600 ft. high, and is the highest peak in Arizona.

Our first stop as we came into town was the parking lot of Bookman’s, a really great used book store. Really a used book, used magazines, used toys, used video games, used small appliances, store.

While Jan and I enjoyed Bookman’s, Nick and Terry went off to take care of the real reason for this trip. On Friday Nick had uploaded the file for the latest issue of the Gypsy Journal to his printer in Flagstaff, and today was the day to pick up the printed papers.

The first thing we noticed outside Bookman’s was the local version of the town mascot. In this case, it’s a mountain lion.

Flagstaff Mtn Lion Mascot


We’ve seen javelinas in Sedona,

Sedona Javelinas 2

moose in Coeur d’Alene, ID, (I’m not sure if this guy is chained down because he keeps wandering off, or he gets moose-napped.)


and mermaids in Beaufort, SC.

Mermaid 1

Nick and Terry were back in about 30 minutes, and after they did the bookstore thing, and Jan and I shared a cappuccino in the coffee bar, we all piled into our truck to drive around.

Old Route 66 passed through Flagstaff so we took some time to drive the old downtown area, checking out the little shops and stores. Heading on out on 66, we stopped off at an Office Max so Nick could get a new toner cartridge for his laser printer. There were still some snow banks in the parking lot, left over from last week’s snow, and by the exit, this indication that they weren’t sure that last week’s snow was actually the ‘last’ – a snow shovel and a bag of salt for the sidewalk.

Flagstaff Snow Shovel

Our next stop was right down the street. Nick and I did the Best Buy while judging by the large bags they lugged back, Jan and Terry tried to buy out the World Market store right next door.

By now it was almost 1:30, and with all of us getting hungry we decided to have lunch at Salsa Brava, a Mexican restaurant that we really liked when we were here in March of 2008.

And apparently we weren’t the only ones who like it. A while back, Salsa Brava was featured on Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive-Ins’ & Dives, and you can check it out here on Salsa Brava on Diners, Drive-Ins’ & Dives.

The food was delicious, in fact so much so, that both Jan and Terry bought a copy of the Salsa Brava Cocina Cookbook shown here.

Salsa Brava Cookbook

After a great meal, we drove back to the Bookman’s parking lot to pick up Nick and Terry’s Explorer, with a quick stopover at the Michael’s store right next door.

We decided to return to Verde Valley by way of Sedona and Oak Creek Canyon along AZ-89A

Listed as one of the Top 5 Scenic Drives in America, the switchbacks through Oak Creek Canyon only covers a little over 2 miles, but drops you over 2600 feet in elevation.

Talk about your ear-popping!

Oak Creek Canyon

In fact the whole trip was ear-popping. Starting at about 3200 ft. in Verde Valley to a little over 7000 ft. in Flagstaff, and of course, back again to Verde Valley.

The stop and go driving through downtown Sedona took a while, but we got back to the rig about 5 pm, after another long, but very enjoyable day.

Tomorrow we’ll be Skyping with Brandi, Lowell, and of course Landon. We can’t wait.



Thought for the Day:

If it weren’t for double-standards, some people would have no standards at all.