Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Canyons - Day 3 - 17 June 2008

After enjoying a very sumptuous breakfast at El Tovar lodge - a European looking up-scale hotel on the Grand Canyon rim - we set off along a scenic east Rim drive to the famous Desert View Lookout. Here we made a brief stop at the Tower View Cedar Point. One more look at the magnificent Grand Canyon river.

Our next stop was the Navajo and Hopi trading post. This was the largest shopping & gift centre I visited on this tour that had artifacts, gifts and collection items manufactured and painted by local Indians. My favourite amongst them was the exquisitely painted clay-pottery. Soon we were passing by the painted desert. This was one of the three deserts on this tour and by far the most beautiful desert I have ever seen. Nature was at its best here as the mountains and rocks along this desert road were in varying colours like blue, black, pink, orange, green, etc. You'd be amazed to see mountains and their rock formations in all these colours, but then they are and no wonder this place is called the painted desert. I tried taking a few pictures, but the best part of this desert went pass by when I was having my sandwich, so i couldn't take good pictures here!!! Pity!

Late afternoon, we checked into Lake Powell resort at Lake Powell and rounded off the day at the beautiful Lake Powell resort, followed by a boat ride on Lake Powell. Later in the evening, dinner was served (part of the package, tonight) at the famous rainbow room at the resort where I shared the table with Katrina & Steve Hawes and Krista & Dan Gerhart. It was celebration time as the The Hawes were celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary; the next day was Dan's birthday too. Throughout this tour, the Hawes and Gerharts were my best friends and I ended up having many a breakfast, lunch, dinner with them. At one time, Katrina even remarked that she felt she is adopting me! But really, they were amongst the friendliest of people around - for instance, Katrina could never run into strangers; she makes friends with everyone and anyone - who also had family values. Although at this dinner and at many other tables, the main topic of discussion wasn't their 30th anniversary, but it was about India and Indian culture. There's so much curiosity about India and our culture that one just needs to spend some time with foreigners and you'll be submerged in a barrage of questions! It's a good thing, though, and I like it. The more myths about India get squashed, the better it is for my country.

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