Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

Stage 11: Tempe to Las Vegas via Laughlin

We got out of Tempe right on our projected schedule at 10 AM, but kept making more stops than I originally expected, and this turned into a very long day.

We stopped at a Fry's grocery — I'd only ever been in their electronics stores — in Sun City to pick up lunch meat. Something we'd observed was that as we'd gone east, it started getting more difficult to get pastrami and salami in the regular packaged meats and even the service deli sections of stores. East of Roswell NM, they disappeared entirely. Here at Sun City, we found them again and bought 3/4 pound of pastrami. Heading up US-60 to US-93, we later stopped at the town of Wikieup after passing through the town of — I kid you not — Nothing, Arizona. At Wikieup, we stopped at a gas station/mini-market with picnic tables and used the lunch meat to make sandwiches with our very last loaf ever of Dave's Killer Bread Nuts & Grains (now discontinued). With a general overcast, it was not too awfully hot, but I'm sure glad the air conditioning has kept working in the van.

Passing through Kingman, we refueled the van and were then waylaid by a small railroad museum inside the Kingman train station. I hope that someday I'll have the energy to post the photos. Update: See the photos here.

On this entire trip, we've been trying to not repeat routes when possible. Until today, the only repeat segment had been about one mile of city streets in Fort Stockton. Today's repeat segment was from the junction of US-93 and I-40 through Kingman and Andy Devine Blvd, then north to AZ-68 through Golden Valley over to Laughlin rather than the straight route back to Las Vegas. Lisa wanted to go through Laughlin because it's been years since she was last there. We stopped at the Riverside casino and looked at their classic car collection, then had a decent, but not great, buffet dinner overlooking the Colorado River watching their water taxi shuttle people over to Bullhead City and back.

During dinner, we looked over and saw what looked like a 737 taxing down the main highway in Bullhead City. Of course, it was a flight that had just landed at their airport, but it did look odd.

Because of the side trip to Laughlin and the various stops, we were hugely behind our original schedule. Furthermore, getting to the Venetian is time-consuming, particularly on a Saturday night when the Las Vegas Strip is full and when you get confused and park in the wrong hotel's garage. Including walking to the correct hotel, checking in, getting the van, moving in to the hotel, parking the van, etc. etc., it was more than two hours after we initially arrived before I could take my shoes off and start relaxing, at about 11 PM.

The hotel room is amazingly big and luxurious, but both Lisa and I found ourselves wishing for a less plush Holiday Inn Express room with a fridge and kitchen like those we've been using on most of the trip. However, the hotel was nice enough to give me a mini-fridge when I asked for it, and the wired internet works without a problem, so I shouldn't complain too much.

Tomorrow we don't have to be up early, and I'm not going to turn on my alarm. We have errands to do, and unfortunately I have Day Jobbe stuff that must be done. I'd do it tonight, but I'm wiped out.

Most e-mail and LJ messages are getting no action. I have insufficient time and energy to post photos of the train museum and of Kingman that I took and of this huge hotel room that Lisa took. The big comfy bed is calling me.
Tags: arizona, hotels, las vegas, lisa, nevada, travel

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