Sunday, August 31, 2008

Shady Motel Rooms

So really this day has been pretty good, but at the moment, I'm completely distracted by the fact that I'm in a... well.... "questionable" motel room. And... I'm not alone. There are two big cockroaches that are keeping me company. The problem is, I was really hoping to be alone.

I finally talked myself into enough courage to kill the one I could see (the other disappeared when I turned away for a second) and then that one fell off the wall and ran under the bed and I haven't seen him again yet. My sneaker was all set to become a weapon. I was super tired as I pulled into the driveway, and now I'm wide awake and I'm not sure I'll be able to fall asleep.

I wish you were here with me right now. Any of you. It doesn't even matter who, except it would be helpful if you were someone who can get close enough to a cockroach to kill it. But even if not, at least we could be nervous and wide awake together.

Okay, let me concentrate hard on not being distracted.

I started my day in my apartment in Long Beach, and I'm finishing it here in Mesquite, Nevada. It's about 70 miles past Las Vegas, not quite to the Utah border.

Packing up the last of my stuff today went well, mostly because Jim and Marilyn helped with so much yesterday that there wasn't much left to do. So, I wrapped it all up, stuffed it into my car (I guess that's the part that took the longest -I seemed to have aquired a few things while I've been here....), cleaned the apartment, turned in my keys, and took off.

I decided that I needed to see the ocean one last time before I leave, so I drove straight to Seal Beach. I thought about just driving by to "see" the ocean one last time, but my toes claimed they needed to actually "feel" it again.

So, I happily obliged!
I took a little walk on the pier,
watched all the people enjoying their day,
and was able to just spend some time in prayer, thanking the Lord for the really great summer He's given to me and praying about what's to come.
I got on my way and was soon out of the greater LA area, and up into the high desert. I figured since I'll be heading into Colorado in the next day or so, this might be the last time I see "desert mountains" for a while (as opposed to Rocky Mountains).
I saw a beautiful sunset in my side mirrors, so Candis, I took this picture just for you! :) Don't worry, I was completely safe when I snapped it!
I knew that I'd be getting to Las Vegas about the time I would be hungry, so I thought it might be fun to eat at one of the many good buffets. I had settled on the one at Hotel Paris, because it got great ratings. Well, I hadn't realized it would take 20+ minutes just to go the 1.2 miles down The Strip to get there. In other words: TONS of slow traffic! It did mean, however, that I could really see a few things on the way -there was plenty of time to look around.

Here are some of the MANY neon lights all around the strip. In fact, this picture doesn't really do it justice.
New York, New York
The Eiffel Tower in Paris. I figured since my layover in Paris, France in November is so short, we probably won't get to leave the airport and this might be the closest I get to the Eiffel Tower again. I'll just pretend I'm on a different continent. The Arc de Triomphe
Me pretending to be on a different continent. :)

The Bellagio might look familiar to you, especially if you've seen "Ocean's 11". I love the ending scene when they're in front of the hotel watching the waterfall/light/music show. It was fun to watch it tonight -but I had to do that from across the street because the crosswalk was a couple blocks away and I knew I wanted to get going.

Another look at the Eiffel Tower
I tried taking a self-portrait, but it really didn't come out well. But, a lovely couple walked by and the woman offered to take one for me, and the husband insisted we kept moving around to find just the right spot! Very thoughtful.

I had considered staying overnight somewhere in Vegas since I was tired, but upon moments of my arrival, I quickly remembered why it's nickname is "Sin City" and I ended up deciding that I didn't want to contribute any more of my money.

I hopped back in my car and took off for Mesquite, where I now sit with the cockroaches. I haven't seen either one in during the MANY times I've scanned the room as I've typed this blog, but I'm considering leaving the TV on while I sleep. That's not ever successful for me, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

If you happen to be reading this tonight, pray for me as you fall asleep. And if you don't read this until later, feel free to call and check to make sure I'm still okay.

My plan for tomorrow includes Zion National Park, and possibly Bryce Canyon as well. YEAH for national parks!!!!


doug&margarethe said...

Sorry about the cockroaches! Yeak, I don't like crawly, quick little creatures either. Hope you got some sleep. Next time stay in a better,cleaner,motel or else ask to be moved to a better room. You are SO brave to drive so far alone and yet be willing to also make fun out of your long trip by visiting these various national parks. Googling "NSP" brought me to ZionNP. Looks beautiful and interesting that I'ld enjoy visiting one day too! Have fun, "be careful out there", and we will be praying for you. What a blessing to enjoy God's unique creations! Love, Mom

Jim and Marilyn said...

Oh dear...we hope that yo got some good hours of sleep in spite of the little "room-mates!" We hope that your travels this day went well and that you were able to enjoy the parks.

Candis Berge said...

Oh, Kari! Now I have to worry, not only about you taking pictures when you are driving (they were nice pictures but I could see the blurry bushes by the side of the road so I KNOW you were moving!!) but now we have to worry about seedy motels!! And creepy bugs!!

I can't wait to read the next post to know you are in a nice clean motel!!

Kristina said...

Sorry about the little critters in your room. If I had been there I would have stomped on them for you. I've gotten quite good at it since there are many of those ishy guys that appear in our home during the hot Taiwan summers! Ike likes to smash them with his sandals, so maybe he'd be an even better travel companion. Hope you got some sleep and enjoy the rest of your trip home!

Susan said...

Sorry to hear about your roommates,I wouldn't be any good in that situation either. I hope they didn't share your bed during the night. Good luck in your driving.

Kari Joy, RN said...

Mom, if you go to you'll get to the National Park Service main page and can go to any national park from there. I thought of asking for a new room for about 10 seconds, but then knew that I just needed to be brave enough to kill them myself. I am a grown woman after all. The problem was that it took awhile to talk myself into it, and then they disappeared...

Candis, thanks for worrying about me! It's maybe just late enough in MN that you won't read my new post until morning, but I'm so happy to report that tonight's hotel is normal and bug-free.