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Utah, part deux

I’m back, with more news from my trip to the state whose motto is “Industry.” It’s usually accompanied by a beehive, symbolizing such activity. There are beehives on nearly everything, including the interstate road signs.

Speaking of which, I saw quite a few during my drive to the canyon lands, the national and state park areas south of Salt Lake City. The journey was amazing, visually and spiritually. I’ll share those details in my next post. Right now,  I’ll focus on the humorous nature of the drive. First, let me say that for this city gal, driving ten hours round trip through uninhabited land was a marvel. I have never seen this much open space in my lifetime.

Those who know me, know that I have a spidey-sense for rest stops. I do, because I always need to use one. This trip challenged my super powers. My advice to fellow travelers – take the industrious Utahns seriously. When you see the road sign, “No Service for the next 150 miles,” believe it. They ain’t kidding.

I was eternally grateful for the few spots along the way that did accommodate this wanderer, places like the Sinclair Market Express in Price, UT, where they had a proper lunch counter and grill. It even rates a listing as a “Bar and Grill” on Utah’s Castle County tourism page. The hot dogs were delicious.

My more kitschy favorite was Papa Joe’s in Crescent Junction.IMG_4118 IMG_4119This was my kinda place, right down to the wall of photographs just outside the restroom that travelers had taken of themselves, standing in line for the restroom. These Utahns are pretty darned funny. Plus, there were nearly fifty varieties of jerky and a wall of ice cold Gatorade. A desert travelers dream.

Since it’s unsafe to snap photos while traveling at high speeds, I missed collecting evidence of some of the funnier things I saw along the road. You’ll have to trust me when I tell you that at one turn, I had a choice between taking Skyline Drive or Starvation Road. Or the gentle reminder on Highway 6 that “Turn Signals are the Original Instant Message.”

In some towns, like Wellington, time has stood still. The gas prices on a station in the center of town read $1 a gallon. The Pillow Talk Motel was straight out of the 1950s. Someday, if you’re bored, read the Trip Advisor reviews. They’re a whoot. Here’s a sample, entitled “Scary Good.” I propped up pillows against the door to stop intruders. The soaps were great. The room was cool, as in cold. It was scary, being 1am. Good 1/2 way point between Salt Lake City and beautiful red Moab. 

Good to know, fellow traveler, good to know.

As for going back in time, my one regret was not having enough time to investigate the Cleveland Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry:

It boasts the densest concentration of Jurassic-aged dinosaur bones ever found. What’s not to love about that?

Until next time, blogisphere.





2 thoughts on “Utah, part deux

  1. Love your road diary, Bette. The Western landscape is very spiritual for us Easterners. I head to Santa Fe in a few weeks. BTW did you know that Kerouac didn’t know how to drive?? I read that somewhere recently. Hope you have many more adventures this summer! It’s going fast…. Gail

    Sent from my iPhone


    Posted by girlonthebench | July 18, 2015, 11:35 am
    • So good to hear from you, girl on the bench! It has been a spectacular summer so far. I can’t believe it’s mid July. Santa Fe is an all time fav for me. If Mark Miller’s Coyote Cafe is still there, stop in for a bite. I remember it as being one of the best places I ate while I was there. It may have changed, but hope it is still good. A native NM gal warned me never to eat the green salsa, unless you like things scorching hot. My other Santa Fe memory is that I bought a pair of hand tooled, turquoise leather boots. I had to carry them home, one under each arm, on the plane. I bopped more than one person on the head walking down the aisle. Those boots were made for walkin’ and dancin’ and a few other things I’ll leave to the imagination. 😉

      Posted by elkamins | July 18, 2015, 11:51 am

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