High winds and major rain and t-storms originating from the US mid-west had us adjust our itinerary when we departed Moffat, Ontario for Arizona on Dec. 27, 2008. We headed more directly south to Indiana instead of going west to Chicago. As a result, we were fortunate to avoid almost all of the heavy rain, severe thunder storms & high winds that affected several states & Ontario. But the drive through Indiana was very boring - it's very flat, mainly farmland & there were miles & miles of it. T he section of Illinois we drove through was much the same. Oh, I forgot to mention that much of these states were under water due to the rapidly melting snow & heavy rains. There were mini lakes everywhere. Most of the central & mid-west US is pretty uninteresting geographically if you're sticking to the Interstates to get somewhere which we are doing.
Missouri was a little more interesting because of rolling hills & trees. Below, the famous arch in St. Louis and a photo of Busch stadium.
Then Oklahoma was flat again, and mostly farmland. We crossed the entire state of OK from 1 side to another.
Just when we didn't think it could get any flatter, it did in the Texas Panhandle. Boy, it's as flat as I remember Saskatchewan to be. You can see for hundreds of miles in the Texas Panhandle, except there is nothing to see! - apart from windmill farms and vast herds of cattle. What I learned is that the Texas Panhandle has been identified as one of the fastest-growing wind-power-producing regions in the nation over the past decade because of its strong, steady winds. Pretty exciting stuff - not!
Welcome to New Mexico
Once we hit the western part of the Texas panhandle and then into New Mexico, the geography finally started to get more interesting with buttes, mesas, rock formations, mountains, canyons, etc. And there was also some snow.
In Albuquerque we found a brand new, very nice pet friendly hotel, La Quinta Inn Suites. It was the nicest accommodation of our entire trip. The hotel has a lovely enclosed courtyard specifically to run dogs leash free. It's small but it was better than nothing after our dogs had endured 3 days in crates in the car without any walks/runs. Unfortunately, despite the signs, the doggy do bags provided for dog owners, people at this hotel still didn't clean up after their pets!!! I spent time and effort cleaning up after a lot of pet owners, on their behalf. Grrrrr.
Traffic was light on our trip, even in rush hour in major cities like Tulsa & Albuquerque. Traffic in these cities is nothing like Toronto rush hour which last 18 hours/day, 7 days a week. It's awful driving the greater Toronto area at any time of the day now. I hate it.
Our most exciting "events" on the trip were a possible sighting of a bald eagle (or maybe it was a vulture) and a red-tailed hawk carrying a rabbit, flying low over the highway right in front of us. Other than that, it was just millions of acres of land, water, trees, farms, cattle & cars.
As to Tyro and his travel anxiety? Well, a few drops of Lavendar oil were good for about 3 or 4 hours. He never dropped his head or closed his eyes the entire time in the van; nor did he sleep at all. After the 2nd day, I put in a donut bed in his crate, hoping he would at least rest his head. He sort of did, but still didn't close his eyes. At least he didn't pant for the most part. Needless to say once we got settled into the hotel at night, he was out cold. It obviously wasn't great for him, but at least he wasn't so stressed that it was terrible. He 'endured' it.
Welcome to Arizona!
Dec. 30th, 6:30 pm - we finally rolled up to our new temporary digs in Glendale. AZ. It took us the better part of 4 days to reach our destination safely and without incident. We are so looking forward to our sojourn.
I'm slowly catching up on our blog stories and there will be more about our life here in AZ soon.