I was preparing to head north for the summer, but I wanted to spend a couple of weeks at my parents’ place as I had no idea when I’ll be back in the area. It was also getting a bit warm in their area, so it was visit now or wait until who knows when. Pretty much a no-brainer, so I pulled into their place for what I expected to be a two week visit.
A couple of days before I planned on arriving, I heard from my sister who inquired if I might be available to housesit for an unknown amount of time as she was going to have to head to Washington at a moment’s notice due to a family emergency. Thanks to my lifestyle, and my current location, I was definitely available to drive up to my sister’s to help out.
As it turned out, I left for my sister’s place in Las Vegas the day after I arrived at my parents’ place. I left my trailer down south and made the long, boring-ass drive to Las Vegas. Side note: Las Vegas is one of my least favorite cities I have ever been to. I’m not a Vegas kind of person. I don’t like throngs of people. I don’t gamble. I can do without the fakeness that the Strip exudes. If it wasn’t for my sister, I would avoid the place like the plague.
So there I was, in Vegas, for who knows how long. I was there to look after the dogs and try to not go crazy. My sister was already away and while she planned to return for a night before heading out again, she had to change plans and head immediately to Washington. So I settled in the best I could, with no intention of leaving the house much, if at all.
As it turned out, the day I arrived in Vegas, my good friends Brandon and Kerensa were on a day trip to explore the city. Not one to pass up an opportunity to see these two, I dragged my butt down to the Strip for a few hours to socialize. It was great seeing them, but that was enough time among the tourists.
My sister wasn’t planning on being gone the week that I arrived so she had a houseguest that showed up for a few nights. Fortunately I knew the guy as I had spent time with him last year at my sister’s wedding. But the addition of a houseguest meant that the planned peace and quiet at my sister’s didn’t materialize.
I ended up being there just a week and was able to spend a day with my sister and my brother-in-law, before I headed back to spend time with my parents.
The Hoover Dam is just outside of Las Vegas, on the Nevada/Arizona border. While I have driven past it many times, I had yet to take a tour of the dam, so I thought the drive back would be a perfect opportunity to do so. There was one slight problem – I totally forgot about spring break. Ugh!
There were a huge number of people at Hoover Dam the day I arrived. I realized the mistake I had made as I drove down the entrance road and was welcomed by a nice long line to get through the vehicle security check point. Crap! Oh, well, I was there so I decided to make the best of it.
I quickly decided that the last thing I wanted to do, or was going to be able to do, was take a tour of the facility, so I settled for driving across the dam. I didn’t realize this was still possible. Sure, this was the way across the Colorado River until 2010 when the bypass bridge was completed. I had just assumed they no longer allowed vehicles to cross over. I was wrong. So I slowly drove across, trying not to take out any of the thousands of tourists milling about.
Once across, I found a parking place and walked around a bit, snapped pictures of the dam and surrounding area. Then I got in my Jeep, drove back across the bridge, and got the hell out of there.
Spending Time with My Parents
For the next two weeks I mainly chilled out with my parents. I didn’t go on any grand adventures other than an early birthday dinner, a co-working session with a co-worker who lives in the area, and a lunch visit with an old high school buddy who I last saw when I was in the Seattle area last summer.
My visit coincided with the desert being in bloom, which made for a gorgeous view looking over my parents’ backyard. It also meant that my allergies flared up worse than I can ever remember.