There were four Smiths, one minivan, and too many pieces of luggage to count. But the family was anxious to get moving, and nothing could stop them from reaching their ultimate goal: the magnificent and ultra-American destination, The
When my dad first told me we would be driving to the
My weak attempt at protesting the trip ultimately failed; however, I came to the realization that I would never forget this trip, whether it became the best experience of my life or the most traumatic.
I felt the excitement of the unknown as we pulled out of the driveway toward our first stop:
We then rode through
On the ride to
Throughout our journey west, we passed through several other cities including Checotah, Oklahoma (“Birthplace of Carrie Underwood!”), Amarillo, Texas (location of the Cadillac ranch, a row of ten old cars buried halfway into the ground), and Santa Fe, New Mexico (home of several crystal blue lakes and the greatest apple pie on earth). Each of these places had a unique personality and served as a wonderful prelude to the
When we finally reached the Canyon by train, I was astonished at the immense expanse of reddish rock. We were only on the South Rim, and there were hundreds more miles that we did not see. We hiked on a trail that led into the canyon and the view and weather were near-perfect. Later, as I peered through a telescope into just one piece of the remarkable canyon, I realized the sheer amount of patience, cooperation, and preparation it had taken for my family to reach what once seemed like such a lofty goal. Forty-eight hundred miles and twenty-five postcards later, I know for certain that the story of my family’s journey will be my favorite one to tell through the years.
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