I was awake VERY early since I pretty much had not slept anyway. We got up and packed and out of the campsite as soon as possible. Translation = 9:10 a.m. We headed across the street to an RV repair shop. I had stopped in there the night before on the way to buy slingshots and spoke to a VERY old man who assured me they could work on our trailer in the morning.
I forgot to mention that we developed a new problem with the trailer yesterday. J The emergency break-away cable that connects the car to the trailer evidently dragged on the ground for long enough to shred it. Ends dangling from both the car and the trailer. This is on top of the right brake light working intermittently.
We showed up at the garage at 9:20 and the wife of the old man threw a fit! "Mike said not to take ANYONE!!! He is too busy!" I begged. The old man felt bad for me, went and talked to Mike and convinced him to take a look. A guy about my age came out, fixed the cable, removed the rust from the taillight, put a bead of silicone around the lens, and sent me on my way. Total cost = $22. Yea!!! Still haven't fixed the leak around the A/C, but it hasn't been raining, so no problem. Also, the tarp on the bed while we drive has all but eliminated the problem (Thanks for the tarp, Ginny! J)
We drove on into Bryce Canyon and everyone enjoyed it. We walked along the rim between Sunrise and Sunset points. We saw a sign saying that Queen's Garden hiking trail was only .8 miles down into the canyon, so the kids and I decided to do it. Big Jimmy was nervous and with his fear of heights it was a good thing he didn't join us. We hiked down a narrow, winding path between the HooDoos and all kids LOVED it! They all agreed that "THIS is what I wanted to do!" [said Nona.] They also said they wish we had done this at the Grand Canyon. The moral of this story…we will be doing much more hiking in the future! All of our legs are tired.
After lunch in the Lodge (where I dumped a glass of water on my computer…the letter "o" is just now starting to work after 7 hours), we went on a horseback ride into the bottom of the Canyon. I really enjoyed it, as did the girls and little Jimmy. Clark thought it was "cool at first, but then my legs started to hurt." Big Jimmy says, "It was an enjoyable ride, punctuated by moments of sheer terror." He's not kidding. His mule loved to walk right on the edge of the trail, hanging over the cliff. He was scared to DEATH. He was behind me, and there were quite a few curse words coming out of his mouth. Once we got down to the valley, he was able to relax. A little. ;-) The main negative was the wind. It was RIPPING through the valley and with it carrying a ton of sand and dirt. We are all COVERED in sand and dirt. Jimmy just touched my hair and said, "[email protected]#$!" It feels absolutely disgusting.
After the trail ride, we hit the road. Decided not to spend another night in Bryce, even though we had planned to. Jimmy's plane back to Sarasota leaves Salt Lake City at 2 p.m. The GPS says Bryce is 4.5 hours away, but after a week and a half on the road we have learned that actually means something more on the order of 6 hours. We don't want to have to pack and leave the campground at 6 a.m. So, we are almost to our waypoint of Orem, UT. Jimmy begged for a hotel, so we're going to shower in a private bathroom and enjoy the comfort of a bed tonight. He had all the fun he can stand. The kids, on the other hand, are begging to camp! Nona saw a sign for a KOA and started chanting for it. I assured her we'll be in one tomorrow night.