Soul, travel, Uncategorized

A red car through red sandstone outcrops

A red car drives through the freeway towards the red sandstone outcrops of Valley of Fire.

The Lumineers’ Cleopatra album is on for the whole trip. My friend said that she had the playlist for over a year; I said I did not mind, because I liked the band too. I find traveling more fun when there is music.

No matter how many hours a trip takes, we both liked traveling except for being caught in slow traffic.

On our way, however, to Valley of Fire one summer’s day in Las Vegas, Nevada, there was not much traffic thankfully.

Yet, when the car finally arrived at the entrance to the state park, we spotted a sign which said that there was extreme temperatures today.

When my friend checked in the morning though, it was less than a hundred degrees.

But we were already there, and it’s not every day one gets to hike in the Valley of Fire on noon-time during summer, so we rode on.

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reflections, Soul, travel

Waiting for an eclipse on a mountain park

It was the 21st of August, 2017.

It was overcast the moment I opened my eyes and gazed at the window. The sky and possibility of rain in the Las Vegas Valley tempted me to stay longer in bed and sleep, but I decided to get up instead.

My cousin Jango stood there in the bathroom, fully clothed as if for a hiking adventure. I did not know that the eclipse would take place at 9:00 AM in our area.

“We’ll be going to Exploration Peak for the eclipse,” he said.

I hurriedly ran back to the room and changed.

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Soul, travel

Silence that can be heard

Our car fled up the mountain roads with the front windows and one back window open. My cousin did say that it would be cooler up in Spring Mountains (Mt. Charleston) – around 70 degrees. Truly, it was colder compared to the temperature in the flat lands.

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When one is out in the sun in Vegas during summer, the sensation is that of opening an oven door to take a peak at a baking dish.

It was in December 2014 that I first visited Mt. Charleston but not for a hike. I had three or four layers of clothing then, while my cousins probably just had two, because winter is nothing to them. The sides of the roads and the peaks were covered in snow.

When we continued our drive up to the area we were going, I found familiarity in the scenery – only it was summer this time.

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family, Heart, Soul, travel

Landing in Las Vegas IV: Mt. Charleston & Red Rock Canyon

*Featured Photo courtesy of my cousin Jango!

For the first two times we’ve visited Vegas, we were able to go to Mt. Charleston in December 2014 and to Red Rock Canyon in June 2015.

Although we did not climb any trail in Charleston, playing in the snow (my first time!) with my cousins is a memory I will hold dearly in my heart.

Years went by as my cousins from my Mom’s side of the family grew up and made their memories together, while we lived in the Philippines. Any time with them, no matter how short, is not to be taken for granted.

So when we had our first reunion in years (!) with my Mom and I in Vegas, one of my biggest and special dreams (one that is not related to an ideal career or lifestyle) came true.

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