You know you've been spending too much time at home alone with your kitty, when his regular meowing starts to sound more and more like a human word.
Poor little Oscar, being neglected on this here blog due to the thousands of holiday photos that I'm still yet to get up and running. Well, my darling kitters is just fine here at home - growing bigger by the day. He has an alarming foot fetish which has resulted in my poor toes being covered in scratches, but the next second he's loving curled up resting on your arm, so it's impossible to stay cranky with him.
"You didn't need that eyebrow, did you?"
Oscar has also recently had his er, big boy operation, and is now ball-less. Only, he still has balls. Huh? I thought that cat neutering simply chopped them off? Apparently not. He may be a trifle less manly, but he's still strutting his stuff, frolicking around the flat showing off his nicely shaved hiney.
"Who, me?" [Innocent face.]
Jase has been out of town for a while now, and I'm going slowly crazy without him here. I miss him loads, and it has literally been months since we were in our normal routine. Hopefully he gets to come home soon. Oscar is not impressed that he's stuck with just me... and I'd like to keep my toes attached to my feet where they belong. The boy better come home soon, is all I'm saying.
"TOES, GIMME TOES TO NOM, I WANTS THEM NOW!!"
So, either you all think my Grand Canyon pictures are awful - OR my feed reader is apparently broken and nobody has actually seen this post the good old-fashioned blog visiting way. I'm going to tame my shattered ego and hope for the latter; because my Bloglines has an awful [!] next to loads of my favourite blogs right now, and apparently hates them all.
Anyway . . .
Onwards to the pictures we go!
6. Monument Valley, Utah.
I'd read about this part of the trip from day one, but I really didn't expect it to be as amazing as it was. From the Grand Canyon, the roads stayed really flat - and then we crossed over on to Navajo land, and the landscape changed completely. The rock formations literally came up out of nowhere, and looked amazing from a distance, but even more unbelievable up close. The soil was so, so red. When we got into Monument Valley, we took a tour in an old converted school bus, and got up close and personal to the formations. These are some of my favourite photos from the entire trip.
7. Durango, Colorado.
Again, with the landscape. We left Monument Valley and drove all afternoon to the bottom of Colorado. We stayed in Cortez overnight (hello, giant Walmart!) and then made our way to Durango - which was quite possibly the coolest little town of the trip. At lunch, I had a hoagie (hee hee), and also had a taste of the most amazing homemade chicken pot pie, which I talked about for the entire rest of the trip. WHY DIDN'T I ORDER THE PIE? Yes, one pie was just that good.
Anywho, here we had the option to choose what we did for the day; white water rafting or jeeping through the mountains. I'd already done rafting in New Zealand, so opted for the off road jeeping. We got the coolest driver and a really cute blue Jeep Wrangler, and spent the day in the sun. I heart Colorado. Unfortunately, some of the infamous Monument Valley red dust had smeared my camera lens, which I didn't notice until I got back, so most of my Colorado shots are blurry. Sad.
The epic saga continues...
4. Las Vegas
I've been to Sin City once before when I was younger; but even still was still mindboggled by it. The drive into Vegas, with the billboards popping up, and the casino signs everywhere - and then the strip basically popping up out of nowhere; there's nothing else quite like it. We stayed in a dodgy, dodgy hotel here with giant cockroaches and a weird shower, but on the plus side, it had air conditioning that worked. Thank goodness for that, because phew, it was hot. I went on the Manhattan rollercoaster in New York, New York, and I think I actually burned off the top layer of skin on my face just climbing the first rise. HOT.
5. Arizona - Grand Canyon
We stayed in the little town of Williams, on Route 66, a small drive from the Canyon. Before we got to experience the canyon itself, we were driven first to the Imax theatre to watch a film about it, and second to a small air field not far away. Here, I panicked slightly (!) while we were all weighed in and distributed between helicopters for our scenic flight. Luckily I was able to fly with some friends, and we had the most amazing ride - I've never been in anything quite like it. The canyon is quite honestly mindblowing; I would have loved to walk around on the inside and just look UP. Wow. I took about 150 pictures of it, alone.
Now, I promised pictures - and by joe, I will deliver them! (Never mind the fact that I've been back in the country for the past oh, almost three weeks now? Not the point!)
As much as I love nearly all of my pictures from the trip, if I posted them all I think I'd end up using my entire bandwidth for the rest of the year, and possibly cause the internet to spontaneously burst into flames, so I'm going to have to be choosy and just post my favourites. Sounds easy, but it's hard when you have approximately 900 favourites. I'll do my best!
If you've got a good half hour to spare, you can check out the rest here.
1. San Francisco
The first step on my journey, way back at the beginning of August. It was stunning weather, not too hot, not too chilly, and blue skies all round. Our 'close to the city' hotel ended up being a good hour's walk away, but it was right along the bay and past some amazing houses and streets, so it wasn't too terrible. Sadly Alcatraz was booked out in advance which was disappointing, but I loved the rest of the city just the same.
2. Los Angeles
The hostel was right on Venice Beach, as in overlooking the boardwalk. Pretty impressive, even if the boardwalk itself is full of crazies twenty four hours a day. While in Los Angeles, I managed to cram in quite a bit of sightseeing - from Santa Monica pier, to Hollywood Boulevard, to Universal Studios and driving around Beverley Hills. No celebrities though, at least that I could spy.
Ah yes, the land of Disney! We stayed here a good few days before beginning the Grand Southern Contiki tour - plenty of time to explore. At Angels Stadium, I caught a baseball game against the Yankees, which was an experience! And my dear Kirby-face flew into the USA, and thus the giggles and self-portrait shots commenced. This was my third (!) time to Disneyland, and I still loved it just as much as my first.
And there we have part one, the West Coast. Stay tuned!