116 degrees, are you freaking kidding me

Trip Start Jun 16, 2010
Trip End Aug 23, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Arizona
Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Up early, checked out then drove to a mall to grab a cheap and hearty food hall breakfast. Also a few more supplies for the road.

Hot already before leaving Yuma visited the Territorial Prison State Park. Not sure of the history but it was an interesting enough place. Would have stayed longer but getting too warm and I was keen to press on to Phoenix.

Hit the highway, more desert. Beautiful arid landscape. Really wonder what life must be like here, especially in the random homes so far from anywhere. Half way between Yuma and Gila Bend (ie in the absolute middle of nowhere) I pulled off the highway in a rest area. Taking my shoulderpack which was full of fruit and water I went for a walk. Even though it was incredibly hot I just wanted to experience this landscape rather than see it zoom by from the drivers seat.

Looking out for rattlesnakes and gila monsters I followed a sort of trail for a few hundred metres. It was rocky, little bit scrubby. All the time keeping an eye on the car. Know full well if I got lost here despite my provisions Id no doubt be dead by sundown. Sat in a clearing for a short while trying to contemplate that I was here. For the first time in an age I was completely alone, miles from anything and anybody. It was a good feeling.

Hadnt been gone from the car for long but being out in the desert took a bit out of me. Sweating, constantly thirsty. Up until now Id been driving with the window down. It was time to crank up the cool air. Playing with the climate control I found out the outside temperature was 116 degrees. Are you freaking kidding me. Thats insane!

Waited a little while before hitting the highway again, I wanted to make sure I hadnt fried my brain before hurtling on to Phoenix. Stopped in Gila Bend for gas and toilet. Got a sandwich in a diner, for once no coffee though. Too hot to enjoy my coffee.

Had booked my Phoenix accom last night, I chose the Arizona Grand Resort. Drove though town straight to my hotel. Even though I hadnt travelled far today I was tired once again. So good to get to my room and shower. Now I dont play golf, and am really not the country club type, not big on family water park resorts either. Its just good to experience something completely different. Probably the last bit of luxury I'll see until Chicago, after today its all roadside motels.

Now I dont want to be impolite to the great city of Phoenix, but driving through town I saw nothing to make me want to venture out into town. Considering the price I paid, I was more than happy to stay at the resort for the rest of the day anyway.

Did some exploring of the resort though, its huge. Ended up in the pool, or I should say A pool. Sat in the swim up bar had a couple of drinks and made some friends. Kevin and Mary from Ontario. Nice couple took me under their wing insisting I had dinner with them tonight. Think they felt sorry for me travelling alone. Great company, really nice couple and boy those were some excellent tamales. Im talking about dinner there.

Ended the night a bit tipsy on the patio of my suite with my new Canadian friends. Temp still in the 90s after 10pm, little bit of a desert breeze just to 'cool' it downa little. Once they left I sat there amazed at the things Ive experienced so far on this holiday. Its only been two weeks, wondering what more is to come.
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