Trip to Sun City AZ and More Part 2 (trip to SD)

I flew into Phoenix Az on Monday October 15th from Melbourne, Fl.  The flight from Melbourne to Atlanta is only about 1 hour 15 minutes.  During my flight I kept checking where my connecting flight terminal was and it kept saying the international terminal.  I just knew that could not be right but when I landed sure enough the board said the international terminal.  My flight was already late into Atlanta and I thought for sure I would miss my connection.  As I boarded the tram I didn’t now what I would do if I missed my connection.  

The tram seemed to take forever to get to the international terminal and after almost running to the gate I found that the flight had not even begun to board yet.  Phew!  Since the plane had arrived from an international destination it had to be searched and approved before it could be boarded.  I had just enough time to hit Starbucks and get a drink and some fruit for the flight.

I had an isle seat, yeah, and I settled in for the  4 hour flight to Phoenix.  When I arrived I phoned the shuttle to pick me up and drive me to my dads which is about 28 miles from the airport. I hooked up the garage door opener, made sure the car would start, turned on the air, and  went to dinner with his neighbor.  At around 9:15 pm I drove to the airport to pick up my dad who flew in from Anchorage, Ak.  Remind me to NEVER drive the freeways in the Phoenix area!!!  I figured at that time of night the roads would not be bad, big mistake on my part.  SO glad I had my husbands GPS.

The next day we headed to the grocery store to buy something for dinner and a few groceries for the road.

Wednesday we were in the car and headed towards Milbank, SD (1746 miles) via a few stops.  My dad decided that we needed to stop and see things I had never seen before, so our first stop was at Meteor Crater.  It was an interesting stop and just hard to believe how a small piece of metal falling from the sky could make such a huge hole in the ground.  Until you see the hole in person you can’t fathom the size.

We headed east again on I-40 and looked for a good place to stop and eat.  A place where dinosaurs hang out is  always a good choice, so we located 2 and stopped for lunch.

Back on the road again and as it began to get dark we located a town just outside of Albuquerque, NM to stay the night, Moriarty, MN.  Of course we had to stop for a bathroom break just before at a casino.  After about  1/2 hour of slots my dad  walked away with a loss of $.09.

At one of our restroom breaks there was a large dog walking a small dog.  It was so funny but don’t know where the owner was.

The land was beautiful in Az and New Mexico.  I don’t think that pictures really show the beauty.

In Moriarty we decided to use a coupon (from those books you get when you enter a state) at Americas Best Value Inn.  Lets just say it was interesting.  On the plus side I stayed on Route 66! Miles driven the first day was right around 500.

The next morning it was on the road again after a quick breakfast at……drum roll please…….McDonalds.  Believe me if there had been a better place we would have gone. Day 2 was driving and eating.  During the trip we switched off driving with about 2 hours each time which worked out great. We ran across a severe accident just before arriving in  Pueblo  but praise God it on the opposite side of the road.  A UPS truck had rolled and there were packages piled high, so was the backed up traffic.

We ate lunch in Pueblo and then made our way though Denver.  We drove the E470 toll road around Denver which is very interesting.  There are no toll booths but cameras that take pictures of your license plates and mail you a bill.  So we had NO idea how much it was costing.  I just looked it up on the internet and it looks like it cost around $15.  I must say there was virtually no traffic on this road.

We stayed in for the night in Wheatland Wy.  We drove 602 miles the 2nd day.

The 3rd day we were off to Belle Fouche with several fun stops.  Our first stop was at the Crazy Horse Memorial.  The face of Crazy Horse is finished but there is so much more that will be done.  I can’t imagine how long it will take.  It was started in 1948.

Next to Mount Rushmore where we enjoyed the walk, the sights and the food.  I broke down and tried a buffalo hot dog, without the bun of course.

Then on to Deadwood where we stopped for slots. Hummm this seems to be a theme. Just before we arrived we saw three deer standing in a front yard right along the road.  Some of God’s beautiful creations.

After an hour we were off to my aunts house in Belle Fouche.  We ate dinner at a small restaraunt and then headed to a nursing home where my cousin is living.  She was in a car that was hit by a drunk driver 10 days after she graduated.  I believe she is 2 years younger than I am but our birthdays are the same day.  Oh almost forgot we saw wild turkeys along the way but can’t seem to find the pictures. 3rd day almost 300 miles.

The 4th day we were headed to Milbank with my aunt Janice along.  It was very cold that day and why we stopped to have a pick nick  is beyond us all.  We finally ended up eating in the car. 4th day 408 miles.

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