We made the daunting drive home from Altadena in three days. Four might have been kinder and gentler, but we knew we needed to deal with the damage at our lake house, and we both looked forward to being back in our little rut.
The first leg took us all the way to a Route 66 stop: Winslow, Arizona. We thought we were seeing a lot of haze during the day's drive; it turned out to be smoke from forest fires. (Those have only gotten worse since the first week in May.) TripAdvisor has come in quite handy in terms of finding good restaurants, so we settled on E & O Kitchen and relied on Garmin to take us there. Garmin delivered us to a deserted airport hangar; it was beginning to get dark, and there was no sign whatever of a restaurant. We went back and tried the route again; this time, though, I flagged down an oncoming driver who told us to drive around behind the hangar--and sure enough, there it was. By then it was thoroughly dark, and the sign on the door said the place closed at 7....but we were greeted cordially, seated, and assured it wasn't too late. The place was quite a find--delicious food, courteous service, and great prices. When he saw DHubby's USAA credit card, the young man thanked him for his military service; that was nice.
Our second day took us all the way across New Mexico--this time in clear weather. It gave us a chance to see why this state is The Land of Enchantment--the colors, rock formations, vistas! We stopped briefly in Gallup because I had seen a fabric shop the night we spent there on the way west; alas, it was not what a quilter would have in mind. The store stocked satins and velvets in bright colors--the material of choice for modern pow-wow/dancing garb. We passed one crowded corner where many people were lined up out the door and down the sidewalk--all ages and stages. This turned out to be a 'payday lender.' All of the people in line were Native Americans. Sad scene.
We pushed on and stopped at last in Amarillo, Texas. It was 5:30 on a Saturday night. Every restaurant was packed to the gills, with hours-long wait times. Turns out the Domino's now has a line of 'Artisan pizzas'--so we had one delivered to the motel room, augmented by some of the fruit and veggies still in our cooler. Perfect!
We will be thinking about this trip for a long time to come.
I wrote a few reviews for TripAdvisor