After the Sequoias we headed west to the Pacific Ocean.
And finally Los Angeles.
We stayed in AirBnB properties all but one night. We tried to keep the nightly rate around $100. Sometimes it was a little more and sometimes a little less.
Each property was totally unique. Our first night just north of Phoenix was in a house built mostly underground.
I told you about the lovely place in Boulder City just east of Las Vegas where we stayed 2 nights. But the night we saw Celine we stayed in a gated $2.5 million mansion in northwest Las Vegas. The room was tiny and almost nothing worked. There was no air conditioning and the shower was just a trickle. The main benefit was that we felt very safe behind the electronic gates including our auto and belongings.
Next we went to a fruit grove in King’s Canyon California that served us an awesome breakfast, the best we’d had anywhere.
On the coast we stayed in a beach house in Cayugas with a view of the Pacific Ocean from both our room and outside balcony.
For the last two nights of our journey we stayed in a basic house very near LAX. Our main concern at the end was that we would be able to get to the airport for a 6:30 a.m. flight. Our host picked us up from dropping off the rental car the night before and took us to meet our plane at 4 a.m. with no further charge than the room fee.
Now we’re back home in our own home, our own room, and our own bed. There’s no place like home.
Our last site to see in the Vegas area was Hoover Dam. It seemed we climbed and climbed (in a car) up the mountain until we got to the over look where you could see the dam. It was interesting but I wouldn’t make it a primary destination.
After Las Vegas, Charlie and I headed west toward Death Valley National Park in California.
The plan was to see Death Valley in the morning and Sequoia National Park in the afternoon.
I don’t know if anyone could do all that driving but we couldn’t.
Death Valley is a diverse area known for its mountains and borax deposits.
It took us 5 boring long but interesting hours to drive through Death Valley. I don’t recommend it.
After staying the night at a very pleasant AirBnb in a peach and plum fruit grove we headed to Sequoia National Park not to be confused with Sequoia National Forest and Sequoia National Monument. They are all approximately in the same area but the target destination is Sequoia National Park where the very large trees are located.
The drive to the park is a dizzying. As we climbed to almost 8000 feet I was rewarded with a bad headache and extreme nausea that only subsided an hour and a half later when the car stopped. Going back down the mountain was even worse.
The trees, however, were quite spectacular. Glad I saw it, can’t recommend it.
Have you done something spectacular that you wouldn’t recommend?
While in Las Vegas Charlie and I ate dinner at a Gordon Ramsey restaurant.
Since I am a fan of Master Chef Junior I thought it would be interesting to try his cuisine.
The theme is British pub with a sixties vibe.
The hostess asked us if we’d like a tall or short table. We chose short and waited just a minute until the personable maitre’d led us to our table for 2 right on the perimeter of the restaurant so we could people watch while we were eating.
The menu had a good variety but we stuck with British comfort food.
Charlie chose fish and chips which was served with mushy peas. Our waitress told us very few people like the peas. We thought they were delicious: peas and mint.
I ate Steak and Ale pie.
This was one of the best meals we had during our travels out west. Unfortunately we didn’t have room for dessert.
Our main purpose for going anywhere near Las Vegas was to see Celine Dion in concert.
Of the hundreds of shows in Vegas she is the only entertainer I would want to spend $198.50 times 2 for rear orchestra seats.
We parked in Caesar’s Palace’s Colosseum using their valet parking service which is free other than tipping the valet. Considering the number of people in the music venue in particular and Caesar’s Palace in general, the valet service was very fast.
Even though our belongings were searched upon entry to the theatre, we could keep our cell phones and point-and-shoot cameras. The only requests were no flashes and no video recordings.
The seats were excellent in that no one’s head was ever in my way and I could see every minute of the entire show. Even the woman in front of me rocking to the beat in her seat was not a distraction. I am glad, however, that I didn’t purchase the top level ticket because most of those people stood up the entire time and obstructed the view of the front orchestra.
Celine sang her hits, tribute songs to The BeeGees and Prince, and even some Great American Songbook standards. The music was a great mix of eras and genres all in the Celine Dion style.
Charlie and I had a great evening and then even a more interesting time at our AirBnB with a host who had never had guests before we arrived. One day I’ll write the whole strange story.
We are currently in Las Vegas, Nevada, getting ready to travel to Death Valley, California.
In the mean time back home our new floors have been getting finished.
Our son called to say the transition between the dining room and conservatory didn’t look quite right after Day 1.
Charlie called the finisher and he said he would look at the area and reprocess it.
Then we heard that some of the lights in the house wouldn’t come on but none of the breakers had blown.
We also have an old fuse box which our son had forgotten about. Apparently the finisher had 2 electric sanders which take 220V service. They plugged one into the dryer outlet on the second floor and the other they hardwired at the breaker box. Using them both at the same time on the old house wiring blew a fuse.
I received a text on Friday morning indicating the floors in both the conservatory and master suite were finished. Can’t wait to see them in person.
If you could visit anywhere in the world where would that be?