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Published: February 16th 2014
Blue Earth, Minnesota
When I left Minnesota I made my way across the western portion of USA. A trip that I took once before via car when my mother moved to Nevada. But doing it solo, and with a cat...well it went as well as my trip from New England to Oklahoma...smooth. On my way out of Minnesota, I decided to stop in Blue Earth at the statue of the Jolly Green Giant man. The company is based in southern Minnesota (however, not in Blue Earth). And I always knew about the Green Giant statue. Located right off of I-90, when I went there, there was construction going on but I managed to find my way around that. Driving around the construction probably took about 10-15 minutes but stopping was worth it-for me it was anyways. Growing up I was always proud of what Minnesota created and was home to...Target, Best Buy, snow mobile, Jolly Green Giant, Mayo Clinic, MOA, numerous movies including Fargo, Mighty Ducks, etc, music artist and actors including Bob Dylan, Prince, Judy Garland. Back to the Giant, according to here
- came to be in 1979. He stands 55.5 feet tall and has 6 foot feet of holy greenness.
manage to drive to Grand Island, Nebraska and rent a room for the night. It was a pretty smooth drive but flat and boring. Nice skyline sunsets though. I stayed in the Travelodge
. The lady at the desk was very nice and the rooms were pretty descent and I slept well. Nothing spectacular but if all you are doing is needing a place to lay your head. I definitely recommend it!
After a well rested sleep, I continued on my way to Colorado Springs where I was going to meet up with a friend who was now a travel nurse as well working in C.S. I did end up meeting her the following morning for breakfast at the Egg & I
. Oh my goodness, what a great breakfast. Service was good, food was good, price was good. Absolutely no complaints. I stayed at the Best Western
, I am pretty sure (I am updating this blog late). I just remember the price was reasonable. The staff was great. I accidently spilled cat litter in the hallway. The gentleman was very kind about it. I was tired and just wanted to take a nap.
Colorado, thru the mountains, is so beautiful. I was
in Denver/Boulder area more than a few years back and I appreciated it and I appreciated it now. I would hope that people that live there do as well but I think the more we stay in one place, the more we take our surroundings for granted. This is one of the reasons why I wanted to be a travel nurse.
I took many scenic stops along the way both in Colorado and in Utah. I noticed while I was driving to Oklahoma from New England of the state changes and sometimes not subtle either. From Virginia to Tennessee, you saw a clear difference. From mountain snow in Virginia to rolling hills in Tennesse. From Arkansas to Oklahoma there was not much of a difference but from eastern Oklahoma to western, there was. GREEN in eastern Oklahoma to brownish (not always) but flat in western Oklahoma. And Nebraska to Colorado...flat flat flat Nebraska, hilly and rocky in eastern Colorado. Hilly and rocky in eastern Colorado to mountains in western Colorado. Mountains in western Colorado to sand/desert of Utah with rock formations in the distance. Not mountains but rocky formations. It was very scenic. My favorite spot was Grizzly Creek
overlook. Well worth the stop here. If you do not stop anywhere else-stop here. At least in October it was lovely.
I drove thru Utah and into Nevada. It was about 1 or 2am and I was tired. I was looking for a place to spend the night but the exits were few and far between in southern Utah and Nevada. I was pulled over by troopers in Nevada. He claimed I went, x1, to the right. I think it was because I had Connecticut plates and they were fishing for something else. He asked me twice if the car was registered to me. He shined his flashlight in the back, saw my small dog crate for my 18 pound cat. He asked where I was going and what I was doing. He finally asked me if I was transporting anything for anyone else (aka drug smuggling). Completely understandable, I cannot blame them for doing their job. He of course let me go and directed me to a hotel (as I told him I was looking for one). He directed me to the Best Western
at exit 94. It was overpriced for me but I was very tired and needed
a place to stay. Area was safe, it was north of the strip. It has nothing to do with the hotel itself but I always think a place is overpriced if I'm not staying there using the pool, exercise room, etc. I just need a place to lay my head and put out the litter box for the cat. For those that like the extra amenities, I am pretty sure the price was reasonable. Not to mention it was just me, I was not splitting with another traveler, etc. The gentleman at this Best Western that early morning was very nice and accommodating. He even gave me a discount because I did not like the price (which had I remembered I am a AAA member and probably should have handed that over-I NEVER remember the AAA card!!!)
The following morning I left north Las Vegas, stayed on the highway passed the strip and finally into California eventually. In Minnesota and Oklahoma they have Tornado drills. So drills on the radio, television-it was not uncommon to hear. But while listening to the radio I heard about what to do in an Earthquake situation. It was surreal to hear it. You
Leaving Colorado, entering Utah
see it on television. Heck, I was at work in Connecticut and felt the one that hit Virginia a few years ago. So I know what it was like to feel a "minor" one. But still surreal that the big one could indeed happen while I am here.
But anyways, I finally made it to my destination and I crashed hard on my first day in Southern California! But I am HERE!!!
****I recommend filling up gas tank in Colorado before entering Utah...I do not know how many miles it was between gas stations but it was A LOT. 70+ miles if not 100+ miles between***
Tot: 0.079s; Tpl: 0.018s; cc: 12; qc: 51; dbt: 0.0143s; 1; m:saturn w:www (220.127.116.11); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.4mb