So now I have a posted schedule for blog articles I’ve failed to write this week. The only good it did me was to cause me some embarrassment at this point.
The reason I failed to update my blog as expected is because I had an unplanned trip to Las Vegas this week, where I’d found out that my sister was going to be for a work conference. So I jumped in my car and headed over to see her. LV isn’t *that* far (the drive’s about 4 hrs straight through), and I didn’t get to see my sister for Christmas so I thought it was worth it.
Still, planning ahead, I took my computer and my tablet thingy and a bunch of stuff so I could get my work done: after all, my sis was going to be at a conference during the day so I had plenty time to work… right? Hmm. First off, I forgot to bring the tee shirt I’d made with soft circuits and LEDs, but I did bring my parts container which had all the extra soft circuits materials – My intent was to show in photos all the different types of materials and the finished product, and describe how I put them together in the tee shirt I made. Well, no problem there either. I called my hubby and asked him to snap a few pictures of the shirt and email them to me.
My poor hubby is sick with some kind of sinus thing. He agreed to take pics of the shirt, but then he said he couldn’t find it. I found it today in the place I told him to look, so the problem probably was his sickness making him distracted and unable to find it. Tuesday, thus, passed without a blog post.
Wednesday got weird for me, because I had trouble sleeping Tuesday night and I somehow managed to sleep all day. When I did get up, I made up for my laziness by going out to Red Rock Canyon to take photos and hike. Unfortunately, they close at 5PM so I only got about 45 minutes out there, but it was still good to get out.
My sister called to tell me her plans had changed and that she was available for dinner if I wanted to go. So we did. She surprised me by being into sushi, which she wasn’t the last time I’d talked to her, so I took her to a place called Tokyo Japanese Restaurant off Sahara. It was rated 4 stars on Yelp with a price symbol of $$ so I knew it wouldn’t be too expensive. Her boyfriend told her to try a bunch of different things, so I ordered for us – we had sashimi, california rolls, spicy yellowtail rolls,
spider roll, rainbow roll, crunchy roll, and a Caterpillar roll. We were sitting at the sushi bar, so they also gave us other things to try – some corn and cheese skillet thing, and a little bit of grilled salmon. Obviously it was too much food for 2 people! So we brought some of the rolls back to the hotel and I had them for a midnight snack.
Anyway, even though I had my voice recorder on me, as well as the notes from my interview with “Sam” the homeless man, I did not find time to transcribe the interview as I’d planned.
Thursday was spent driving. One of the things I really liked about this trip is that I was in no rush at all to get to Vegas or to get home – I had plenty of time for once. So I did something I’ve always wanted to do. I stopped and did sightseeing on the way! Now, I’ve been to Las Vegas by car about 8 times since I’ve lived in California, and never once did I get the chance to stop and see anything more interesting than “Alien Fresh Jerky“, which is just a jerky shop with a police car parked out front, with an alien diorama inside. Whoopee! Hehe.
However, on the way out to Vegas this time, I stopped at Calico Ghost Town outside of Barstow, CA. Every time we’ve passed by the sign for it on the freeway, I’ve wanted to stop there. So I did. I had the rest of my breakfast burrito as my lunch before I went in (remind me to talk to you later about my new health plan), and then walked up the main street of the old silver mining town. It was interesting. The best part was being able to go into a bit of Maggie Mine, which is where they found a huge vein of silver back in the heyday. They had a nice display of mineral samples and some of it glowed in a black light. I found the mine itself to be rather creepy. First, I was alone in my little self-guided tour, and they had little dioramas set up in different offshoots of the main tunnel, showing life as a miner. And every single one of the mannequins they used were creeptastic. I took some photos, I’ll have to upload them later so you can see. I finally made my way out and, after a quick stop at the town’s rock and mineral shop for some take-home samples, I decided to leave. Just before driving out towards the exit, though, I decided to take my car down into the lower parking lot, which was situated in a sort of ravine or arroyo, with rock walls on both sides. I picked up some samples of the rock there, too, only that was free. I haven’t done any official testing or whatnot but I think its agate or chalcedony, with something else. More info soon.
On the way *back* from Vegas, I was feeling a little bit distressed that I didn’t know of anything else I really wanted to see. So when I came up on the sign for Zzyzx Road, I decided to see what was there. Turns out that if you follow Zzyzx Road, you end up in the Mojave Wilderness Preserve, on the edge of a dry lake bed called Soda Lake – when I went there was a little pond of water surrounded by a vast dry bed covered in what seemed to be salt – but I read up on it later and its salt and soda (they made baking soda out of it as well as laundry soap at one time). I pulled over by the water to explore that and take some pictures, and it was very quiet. At first I thought it was truly silent but as my ears adjusted I was greeted with a great chorus of frogs! I also saw a roadrunner cross the road. I crunched my way across the white powder towards the pond’s edge and tried to capture the frogs on my recorder, but they were too quiet and were lost in the wind’s sound.
After a bit I went back to my car, scraped most of the soda and mud off my shoes and kept driving along Zzyzx. I had seen a semi truck head down the road and found that to be odd, so I decided there must be something down there. Turns out I was right. At the end of Zzyzx Road is a Desert Studies Center where they study the animals, plants, and environment of the desert. They also have classes and stuff sometimes, and are open to the public. I parked my car and wandered around, and though I saw people working, no one spoke to me. I took a bunch of photos, visited their visitor’s center (where I signed the guest book and reported seeing the roadrunner in a log book they had for such things). They also had a great display of crystals and minerals found in the area, so I was disappointed that I didn’t find anything while walking around. I did, however, see several ducks in a pond, and watched them swim around and dive down for whatever treats ducks like to eat at the bottom of ponds.
After a couple hours I headed home. All in all it was a good little vacation, but I didn’t get any blog updates in like I wanted. Sorry ’bout that.