Postcards From the Road - Santa Cruz, Las Vegas and Grand Canyon, and Home

This is the last post from our trip - and what a trip it's been. I was just too busy to get to it the last few days, so here's the final batch of pictures. Enjoy!

The second day in San Jose, where I grew up, was spent in Santa Cruz, where I spent a lot of time in my high school years, when I should have been in class...

I always love a day at the Santa Cruz Boardwalk.

Lunch with Dad and my sisters, Linda and Jill. 

Walking and talking on the beach.

We like each other. It's nice.

And then there are the birds...
I did a little cooking that night, and taught Linda how to make spring rolls and nori rolls. We had fun!

Read more about our cooking adventure on PositivelyVegan.
After a too short visit with my family, Rick and I headed for Las Vegas, where we met up with an old high school friend, Paul Graham. Paul writes the terrific blog, Eating Vegan In Vegas, so he was the perfect person to tell us all the best places to eat.

We started at a food truck. No kidding. There was a health fair going on in town, and this round up of food trucks at the "Brooklyn Bridge" in front of the New York, New York casino featured some delightful vegan options.

This was great comfort food for two weary travelers.

We must have been dreaming of home. This southwest pocket was perfectly spicy and gooey.

Here I am, with Paul and Rick, at one of the Wynn's magically beautiful garden areas.

Dessert at the Red Velvet Cafe... oh my... Everything is vegan, and a fraction of the fat and calories of "regular" desserts. Seriously, you would never know these aren't loaded with butter and sugar. Do pay them a visit if you get the chance.
The next morning we decided to take Paul's advice, and drive over to Pura Vida for breakfast. We were so glad we did. We ended up ordering extra food to take with us, know that the vegan pickings are slim at the Grand Canyon, our next stop.

I instantly fell in love with the humble, non-glitzy location and decor of Pura Vida..

Inside, everything was happy and spotless.

The food was just wonderful. Generous portions, filled with love.

Our server Cindy (left), and Chef Mayra took excellent care of us. Next time you find yourself in Vegas, take a break from the glitter and refuel at Pura Vida.

Armed with to-go boxes of good Pura Vida treats, we scooted on down the road, destination, Grand Canyon, one of my favorite places on the whole big world.

I'm always happy here.

Stupid people are allowed to fall off the rim. This is not Disneyland, and there are no lifeguards in the Gene Pool.

We took an "accidental" 7.5 mile hike along the rim. It was too beautiful to turn back, or to hop on the bus for part of the trip, as we'd intended. The Canyon changes with every step, and every breath. The only way to really see it is to take your time and just be with it.

On day three, we finally saw five California Condors. I was about to give up on seeing them this trip, and suddenly, there they were. There's just something about a big, graceful, ugly-beautiful bird with a nine-foot wingspan that can really make a girl's heart sing. This girl anyway.

It clouded up a little on our last morning there, and got windy and chilly. Time to go home.

Back home in Taos, we were greeted by happy dogs and blooming lilacs. Settling back in now, I need some time to reflect on everything we've just done, and see if I can get some clues as to where we go from here. Maybe everything will stay the same... or maybe it will all be different.


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