Thursday, June 19, 2008

Hello... We're in Kansas

Danielle let me guest-blog today, as I wanted to share my thoughts on the adventure so far. Albuquerque is pretty well captured by D below, so I won’t bore you with those details again; however, I will rehash a little wrt the Royal Gorge Bridge. I wasn’t too sure about going, but know D was excited to see some things along our route to Kansas so I obliged. It is an impressive structure and had enough activities to keep both the kids (ok, all three of us) entertained for most of the day. We started out with a ride on the carousel then walked the great span across. Both the girls were a bit disappointed as they were too tall to ride the burros --- it looks like they might get a chance to go horseback riding next week, so that should more than make up for things. We took the tram back across then the railroad cars to the bottom. I would highly recommend everyone visit once if you get a chance. D mentioned one could spend more than a day here, but once and for only a day was enough for me. I wouldn’t mind trying the sky-coaster or rafting down the river some day, but one day at the park itself is plenty for me. Our mascot seemed to have a good time too:

We watched a short movie on the making of the park (about 15 mins of advertisement and 4 mins of useful facts, in my opinion), and I found it amusing they stated the Royal Gorge was cut through sheer granite --- unlike Arizona’s Grand Canyon which was carved through layers of dirt! A little, “My state is better than your state…. Nyaaah!” going on, I think.

Another long drive to Kansas (~8.5 hrs), but all seem to be holding up well. D was very impressed with the cleanliness and high quality of the Kansas rest-stops (we only stopped at one, but it sure made an impression).

Mom’s place is still standing. Not a tree top over 20 feet high and they had to have about 8-10 trees cut down and removed, but the house is intact. Both her and Sue are a little distraught at the mess the storm left, but I keep telling them how lucky they are --- the house made it through without much damage and more importantly, they made it through without any harm or injury!!! For all my views (prejudices?) on Kansas, I must say how thoroughly impressed I am with the kindness of people here. Not 5 mins after we arrived, the Dean of Mom’s college and his wife pulled up and quietly started hauling brush and debris off the property. Two other professors from her college have been working feverishly for the past two days cutting down trees and hauling limbs to the curb. When I went out to introduce myself and thank them for their generosity, there response was simply, “it felt like the right thing to do. We’re just sorry we couldn’t be here earlier.” I have hopes for the future of humanity knowing people are still kind-hearted no matter how Bush and the rest of his cronies act in the face of tragedy. [Had to throw a small political rant in here to make you feel at home reading a post on her blog ;-)]

Mom just left to drive the 2.5 hrs to the Kansas City Airport to get Valina and it started pouring not 2 mins after she left. Guess we’re done moving brush for the day. Thanks for letting me get my thoughts out, and I hope you found it almost as interesting as when D posts.


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