Friday, August 11, 2017

Vegas, Baby

As I write this I am looking out a floor to ceiling window with a view of the desert. I am in a hotel almost next to what I think of as the gateway to Las Vegas. The 15 freeway passes between a dun colored hill and a taller one that is probably high enough to be considered a mountain. On the way into Vegas when you pass this spot, the view of Las Vegas spreads before you. And when you leave and look back as you pass this spot, you get the last view of all the lights before the haul home through the desert.

When the weather guy here gives the forecast, temperatures like 107 or 105 roll off his tongue like it’s just another Friday. Blue skies and sun are pretty much the norm too, though they had rain last week and may get some more next week. I’ve seen what happens when the monsoon moisture hits here. I once watched a flash flood pour with a vengeance through a hotel parking lot before going into an underground flood channel.

But today the sky is completely clear of clouds and a pastel blue.

This was a birthday trip for my son. I am not a gambler or a drinker. I have seen the indoor fake Venice canals, the exploding volcano, the indoor shopping street with the ceiling that goes from afternoon to evening and all the rest of the play land aspects of the hotels enough times not to get excited about them anymore.

This trip, I was happy to be an extra pair of arms to take Jakey in a restaurant so his parents could eat with both of their hands. It seems he always ended up asleep in my arms. Also I was glad to stay with him so they could go out for a birthday dinner. I brought my work with me. Once again I am going back and forth between several projects. I had to okay the cover for the audio version of GONE WITH THE WOOL. I am still dealing with odds and ends connected to the release of A TANGLED YARN. The edits for ON THE HOOK arrived and I had started on the next Yarn Retreat Mystery. Before we leave, I am going to stop at the local Barnes & Noble and sign their stock of my books and leave bookmarks.

I like the idea of working on the road. With all my electronics it’s easy. Though I did bring a hard copy of ON THE HOOK to read over and mark up before I go to the computer.
Of course I brought along some yarn projects. I am finishing up the sample of the project for ON THE HOOK. I thought I would crochet as we drove, but I couldn’t give up looking out the window.

I am always amazed at how interesting the desert is. I’ve flown over the route many times and from the sky it looks all beige and empty, but on the ground it looks completely different. There are mountains tinged with pink and some with an ominous sprinkling of black. Because of the rain last week, the sturdy plants that grow on the desert floor have turned a brighter green and from a distance the ground has a green cast to it.. In the past, we’ve passed impromptu lakes left over from downpours. Even the Joshua trees seemed a little perkier, though there is something sad about them. The way the branches hang reminds me of someone with a dislocated arm.

We have our regular stops to fuel up on coffee and snacks. The Starbucks in Barstow is always bustling with travelers whatever the hour. I like to eavesdrop on their conversations and try to figure out what their story is.

And then it’s home and time to unpack.


Linda O. Johnston said...

I was in Las Vegas too this weekend--for a couple of hours at the airport between airline flights from my Ohio vacation back to L.A. Hot!

Betty Hechtman said...

As hot as L.A. was, it wasn't as hot as Vegas.