1/19/03 Day XXIX of the

1/19/03

Day XXIX of the 2000 Pounds of TNT Detonated 50,000 Years Ago in the Arizona Desert Road Trip of Don’t Forget Winona (Arizona)

Needles, CA to Santa Fe, NM

MAN, it’s hard to write these things in the road! Yesterday’s blog (below) was delayed all day because the motel in Needles connected me at 1400 BAUD. That, for those of you playing the home game, would have been considered low-speed even in 1993. So slow that the Web wouldn’t even come up, and when I tried to check email, Earthlink scoffed at me, beat me up, stole my lunch money and threw my violin case into a tree.

Still, it’s a lo-fi kind of place, here in the middle of the desert. I tried to use Wi-Finder to look for a wireless connection in northern Arizona, but alas, there is none. No Starbucks wi-fi, no hotels, nothing. I know that’s not why people usually come to the Painted Desert, but I gots business to take care of, yo.

We did some business, however, at the great Meteor Crater outside Flagstaff. Not one to be swayed by many detours whilst on message, Tessa actually needed little convincing to visit Earth’s largest intact meteor crater, and a good time was had by all. I learned that 20 consecutive football games could be played on the crater floor, and now you have too.

the wonders of nature! at the Meteor Crater (Stupidest Picture of the Week Award)

We were trying to make it to Santa Fe for the Raiders/Titans game, since my Uncle Chuck is a lifelong Raiders fan, but we pulled with just enough time to see my Aunt Lee and Rosie before they went to bed and a sleepover, respectively. Uncle Chuck is a great guy, full of amazing stories, but totally lacks ostentatiousness. He stayed up well past his bedtime going through old pictures with me, most of them I’ll scan later tonight.

Aunt Lee has lost very little of her radical feminist edge, thank god, and it manifests in her daughter Rosie, who remains the Relative I Like the Most Who I See the Least. She’s going to be super cool, you can just see it in some people. 16 years old but so full of confidence and a damn good idea about how the world works. I think my sister Michelle and her would get along famously, so I’m going to talk her parents into a New York trip.

me (obscured by weird “night settings” on camera), Tessa, Rosie and Uncle Chuck

Note to travelers: visit the Dairy Queen on the west side of Albequerque, before you get into town. It is staffed by a husband-wife team in their 80s who seem to have a running argument originating in 1937. I would consider Tessa and myself to be very lucky to have such a fate.

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