|Sedona in the morning was sweet, I was a bit sunburnt and for the first time wished it wasn't so hot and sunny. An unbelievable concept two weeks earlier sitting in the rain and cold in my Melbourne apartment. We checked out the Holy Church, perched on a rock in a spectacular valley. A simple design which incorporates a cross into the building. The designer had a bit of help from Frank Lloyd Wright. As we turned to leave there was a staircase to a gift shop, which somehow seems a little contrary to the whole religiousness even to a heathen like me.
Feeling pretty good about ourselves for visiting a church, even if it was as tourists, we headed to the Red Rock State Park, where we went looking for mountain lions, Pumas, skunks and various other groovy American critters. However, When La nearly stepped on a 4 foot Gopher snake crossing our path I was caught off guard and undid the previous good karma with some choice blasphemy.
La then guided the trusty Silver Suby back through the mountains to Flagstaff, then off through the desert to the Petrified Forest National Park. About 250 million years ago this part of Arizona was pretty much at the equator. It was also Lush rain forest roamed by pre dinosaur creatures in the Triassic era. Some event caused the massive trees to fall over, and they were then covered in layers of silt and silica rich material. For reasons which are beyond me the wood instead of rotting absorbed the silica and various other minerals into the carbon of the wood, and the end result was trees made of crystals lying around in a desert surrounded by German tourists, an Aussie, a Californian, and a couple of Ravens.
Crossing the border into New Mexico, one of the States annexed off the Mexicans way back, and now the third poorest state, with its population seemingly made up of Mexicans and Native Indians all driving massive new SUV trucks and enjoying insanely cheep fuel. We stopped for a couple of hours in Gallup (see bug blog) Then headed through the darkness to Albuquerque. This trip bought to our attention the penchant the New Mexicans seem to have for Hard Rock and eighties music. We heard some great Pearl Jam, Pat Benetar, Temple of the Dog, Billy Idol, Led Zep, Tool, Alice in Chains, and an insane amount of AC/DC. My memories of Albuquerque will be of a flat, dry strip mall city full of SUVs and its redeeming feature according to La in 5 words or less was "Its name has two Q's"
Onward and downward, we headed towards Roswell. It was a toss up between white sands and the Alien capital of the world. Beach schmeach.