Sunday, February 15, 2009
The Bandolier National Monument was amazing. It’s where we viewed the cliff dwellings. It was the most gorgeous trip to the mountains and cliffs (taking about 45 minutes out of Santa Fe). The girls noses were pinned to the window in amazement at the height at which we were at (can’t wait to see what they think of the Rockies). One minute we were on one side in the lower part of the cliff and the next moment we were on the other side on the upper portion and looking across saying, “Look we were just down over there!”
The park was stunning—the trails like out of a painting. We took a quite a hike to see the dwellings (actually you could view them from a far) that we could actually go into. Grace was in heaven. She kept darting ahead of everyone screaming oh my gosh, oh my gosh….come look at this. We asked the girls if it would be cool to live in a cave (which the RV is feeling quite like one) and Hannah hurriedly answered, “Not me!” while Grace exclaimed, “YES! I would love it. Love it!”
The highlight of the hike was to the ceremonial cave which was 140 ft up the side of a cliff.
(A bit of back drop regarding my fear of heights-it’s this intense!)
For those who do not know this about me, I am terribly, terribly afraid of heights. Once, on a trip Nick and I took to Great America, we checked out the Giant Drop. There was no way I was riding it, but Nick wanted to go on. I decided I would go through the line with him and then when we got on, I would go through the exit and wait for him when he got off. As the lady approached and motioned Nick was next to enter the ride, he quickly grabbed my hand and pulled me on. I totally freaked out—nearly hyperventilating. Nick reassured me that I was going to combat the fear right then on that ride. The anticipation of the drop was excreting torture and before I could verbalize for the fiftieth time that I was nuts for being on the ride…it dropped. I screamed the entire way down and could barely get my nails from being embedding into the steal bar in front of me. I cried for a good 10 mins afterward. Kids entering the ride inquisitively asking their parents, “Mommy, why is that lady crying? She was on that ride. I don’t know if I want to do on anymore.” Poor kids—either I ruined it for them or their parents were going to torture them by insisting they go on.
So, there I was at the first ladder to the 140 ascent to the ceremonial cave. I didn’t want to go up, but honestly—I didn’t trust Nick alone with the girls up that cliff. One slip of the foot and they would be Kapoosh. When Nick gets pumped, he himself has a child-like naivety about dangers. I had to go. Nick went first (Zeke in the backpack carrier) and I watched as my little babies began the ascent—one by one. Looking over the edge was dumb, dumb, dumb….but I just had to see how far up I really was. (Bad mistake). It was horrifying for me. I can’t really say I enjoyed one minute of it…unless I am allowed to count the moment my feet hit the earth again. I can’t believe these Pueblo people lived up so high with ladders half as sturdy (not steel bolted into the cliffs). The pictures I took DO NOT do it justice. It’s an amazing place to visit.
The same night we headed to Arizona to see the Petrified Forest and made it with in 45 minutes of our destination. Bad thing is the thermostat on the RV is finicky and in the middle of the night will just stop working—there we are freezing. Poor Nick, exhausted kept trying to get it working. I think he got maybe 3-4 hours of sleep last night. It will be nice to stay at this park for at least two days to give him a break from all this driving.
The Petrified Forest was neat, but not at all what I expected. It was kind of on the way, so I am glad we stopped, but I can’t say it’s my favorite so far. It could also have to do with the fact that today there are 45 mile an hour winds making it extremely hard to enjoy the hiking (Zeke screamed for the first hike and we ended up having to take turns taking the girls through the different hikes). The coolest part of the park would be the petroglyphs on the rocks.
I can’t believe we have been on the road for a week already….sometimes it feels like only a couple days, and at other times it feels like it’s been weeks (only when the kids are in my hair). Speaking of hair, mine is disgusting right now—haven’t showered in two days, which is a lot for me and after being out in that wind all day, my hair looks wet. I can’t stand it and am looking forward to a shower—hopefully a long one. I know that I am probably extra annoyed as my monthly visitor will be here any day. That will be a trip in itself—womanly issues in an RV with the walls closing in—a great time for hiking (probably Nick sending me on my own—one way hike.
The girls are watching BIG with Tom Hanks—an old goody. I love the part when he’s at the party and trying caviar and he just lets it drop out of his mouth.
I guess I am done for today…as I see that I am spider webbing from one thing to the next…before you know it I’ll be talking about recessive gene traits?????