The Coolest Hotel. Period.

Sunday morning marked the third day of the epic journey to the Southwest! We had to wake up even earlier than usual so we could leave by six o’clock in the morning. Our room was running kind of late, but we managed to get on the bus on time! Of course, everyone fell asleep as usual as we made our way to the Petrified Forest. I, however (being the incredible mountain of awesome I am) stayed awake and looked at the scenery.

The Petrified Forest took a couple of hours to get to, but it was pretty neat. We walked one trail that led us through the petroglyphs that had been drawn there hundreds of years ago. The most famous one looked like a giant monster bird taking a baby from a person. So basically, it is the exact opposite of the “stork” story about babies. After our tour of the forest, we got back on the bus and headed to the Hubble Trading Post.

I thought the Hubble Trading Post was going to be interesting, but I ended up loving it! The gift shop with the Navajo rugs was cool to look at (even though the least expensive rug there was about 200 dollars), but the actual tour of the Hubble House was my favorite. Our guide, Tina Lowe, was Navajo and spoke to us in her native language. She took us through the house and knew a lot about the Hubble family and every artifact in there. The first part of the house with the rooms and living room was my favorite. There was this really old piano that was just amazing, so I took a picture with it. The book cases were also really exciting, because they had books that I recognized (like Oliver Twist), except they were really old copies. I wished we could have spent more time at the Hubble Trading Post, but it was time to get on the bus again.

I enjoyed a pizza lunchable on the bus and watched “Zoolander” to pass the time until we made it to Canyon de Chelly. The Canyon, unlike the Trading Post, was actually kind of a letdown. I was really looking forward to seeing the ruins at the Canyon, but they were really far away and behind a fence. The scenery of the place was beautiful though. The hike back up the Canyon was not so beautiful. Megan and I sweated our way to the top and then posed for a picture with our “muscles”. It was time to get back on the bus and move on towards Gallup, New Mexico. On the way there, we passed through a lot of Navajo land, and it was sad to see some of the living conditions those people live in. We arrived in Gallup around 6:45 pm, and were all able to part ways to go to different fast food restaurants. Kracker, Nathan, Rebecca, and I went to McDonald’s and had a mini feast. Everyone in the place stared at me when I walked in, so Kracker tried to look threatening (I think he pulled it off).

After dinner, we walked back to the bus and watched other members of the group encounter a homeless man. Mr. Rossi bought him some food at McDonald’s, which I thought was very kind of him. Then we hit up the Walmart to get more food, because most of us on the bus are fat kids. Then we made it to the El Rancho Hotel, which is the coolest place we have stayed at by far (maybe the coolest place I have ever stayed, period). June, Emily, Megan, and me walked around for about an hour just taking pictures of the place. I wanted to play the piano really badly, but it was too late by the time I got there. We got some souvenirs at the gift shop and then walked around the hotel some more. Megan, Mary, June, and I encountered two guys from Switzerland and we took pictures with them. I like meeting foreign people, because I find different cultures fascinating. It didn’t occur to us that it was a little bit sketch to be hanging out with two foreign guys late at night until after we had done it, but if anything, it will make for a good story!

Tomorrow will be amazing because it is Acoma day!

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