United States of America · 38 Days · 40 Moments · August 2017

Westward the Wagons!


8 September 2017

Musical theatre demands a stout foundation. Shake Shack to the rescue!
A view of the Hollywood Hills from the Everly hotel. HOLLYWOOD sign at top, the observatory out of view to the right... :)
Our road trip epilogue... heading south to LA for Hamilton, Ella' s birthday gift 6 months in the making. One last hurrah :).

12 August 2017

Nearly the end of the road... La Selva Beach, CA, and Grandmas condo. California!

11 August 2017

Las Vegas is an assault on the senses, and I do not mean that as a compliment. The strip is the answer to the rhetorical question "how much is too much?"
Our visit to Vegas was fun, if challenging. See the view of the strip from floor 36 of the Palms Place, first at evening, then at night. We convinced a reluctant Stosh and Ella to go to the Strip with us. After a series of false starts, we made it from Caesars (where the Palms shuttle bus dropped us) to the Bellagio, and finally to a pleasant dinner at Cafe Bellagio. If we hadn't been so desperately hungry, , it would have been fun to capture a few snaps of the local wildlife, for our seatmates on the shuttle to the hoochie mamas and guidos wandering the strip....!
Some pics from our short stop at the Hoover dam. We arrived at the visitor center at 4:16 pm, one minute after they closed. :) We did get to see the lake and the dam, and enjoy the 101 degree temperatures :).
Not a mirage. Signs that California is near :).
Airstream. Someday.
The landscape between Flagstaff and Vegas was really stunning. Lots of boulders on this stretch of route 40.
Ella really did not want this bug hitching a ride.
Great day in Grand Canyon yesterday. Stosh feeling better, just a cold. Today we travel to Hoover dam and Vegas. Tomorrow we have decided to drive all the way to Grandmas in La Selva Beach, in time for the old man's birthday. Our epic cross country journey is nearing its end 😭.
Righteous bed head, Flagstaff.

10 August 2017

A day at the Grand Canyon! We hiked the Kaibab trail and saw some unbelievable views along the rim as well.

9 August 2017

Stosh recuperating in Flagstaff. Nothing spells relief like vaporizing aliens.
Silver Stallion coffee and bread. We found the nerve center of hipster life in Gallup. BLT on home made ciabatta with heirloom tomatoes...!
Hotel El Rancho in Gallup. I can only imagine what the inside looks like. Wish I could have seen it lit up in neon!
Ella' s playlist up to 11 hours now... Modern English, Sia, Gym Class Heroes, Rihanna, Eminem.
New Mexico hex. First, Meow Wolf in Santa Fe is closed, then our morning hike to Tent Rocks this morning called off because the Stosh man woke up feeling queasy. We are soldiering on... Grand Canyon our next destination.

8 August 2017

Blue Hole in New Mexico. 82 feet deep... 61 degrees 👙❄. Only 2 of the Nowinski clan braved its waters. Only 1 dared to brave its death defying high jump (it really wasn't that high).
Interesting fact about Blue Hole: it exchanges its water completely every 6 hours. Ella has a better cannonball face than her dad 🤘.

7 August 2017

A wonderful overnight stay at the Blue Swallow on 66. 1950s living at its best, quiet evening breezes and a full moon!
Cadillac ranch swampland reserve :). I haven't waded through mud this deep since RFK stadium in 1989!
More pics from Cadillac ranch. Stosh tagged caddy #2 with "ROCK ON" and Ella adorned caddy 1 with "LOVE." The old man left a peace sign on the hubcap :). The recent rains made the whole place a swamp filled with clay mud. Apparently this is rare, lucky us!
Nowinski family went for the trifecta -- brisket, ribs, and pulled pork. All of it delicious :).
Don't mess with Texas!
Fine chocolates from Glacier confectioners in Tulsa OK.

6 August 2017

Gary's Gay Parita, a reproduction 1930s gas station on old route 66 in Missouri. We met Barb, Gary's daughter, who has taken over the place in the wake of his death. She couldn't have been nicer. Lots of antique cars and old time charm. She brought the kids ice cream bars right off the bat. :)
Missouri Science and Technology (formerly Missouri School of Mines) in Rolla, MO.

5 August 2017

Terra Sur in Troy, MO. Stosh making his handsome face.
A stop at Notre Dame with Hope and Johnny ❤.

4 August 2017

A visit with John, Allison, and Michael in Portage, IL 🤘.

3 August 2017

Enjoying a visit with the Cairos in Detroit!
A visit to the rock and roll hall of fame in Cleveland, OH!

2 August 2017

Ella is bored. Braids for everyone.
Unca Jake!
Ella enjoying a photo moment at Melt!
Canton, home of the pro football hall of fame. JUST WIN, BABY :).