Just a few general observations from traveling, apropos of nothing.
1. Boy, a hotel's idea of what a free continental breakfast is sure does vary from place to place! We went from a cold bagel and a cup of juice (in Kingman AZ) to a full breakfast buffet with bacon, biscuits and gravy (in Pecos TX).
2. We were swarmed with foreign tourists everywhere we went. I guess the dollar is good against most other currencies, making it cheaper for them to travel here than it has been in past years. HORDES of German tourists. Absolute hordes every where we went. And lots of Chinese and Japanese tourists. It was funny to be at the San Diego zoo and hear a montage of languages while going through the panda exhibit.
3. Oriental women under the age of forty would obviously never be caught dead wearing sneakers of any sort. While we were walking out on the salt flat of Death Valley, they were walking out there in flip-flops. I was afraid they would melt onto the desert floor, never to move again. It became a game for us. All through the vacation, we were looking at Asian women's feet. In all those miles, we saw exactly ONE woman with sneakers on. She was at least 50.
4. If you see a woman tourist in a dress, there is a 99% chance she will be foreign. It's one of those logic things. Not all foreign women tourists wear dresses, but all the women tourists we saw wearing dresses were foreigners. Not that they were modest dresses, in all cases, mind you. But I was surprised by the number of young Europeans wearing dresses. NO, absolutely NO, American women tourists wearing dresses.
5. Books on CD make the drive to and from SO MUCH nicer. Really. But you have to be careful. You can't skip over stuff much, and anything off color (that I would normally just skip over) becomes embarrassing when you have to listen to it. Don't ask me how I know. I'll tell you later.....
6. Nothing like making expensive Texas gas look cheap. Gas is at least 40-50 cents per gallon cheaper here. We felt put upon before we left. Now we feel grateful.
7. It is a lucky woman who can spend 17 days traveling with her family and be completely sorry that it's all over. I am that woman.