There were no signs of the wild dogs we had seen yesterday. Chris and I brushed our teeth and washed our faces at Denny’s. They have a lovely bathroom by the way :D We stopped at a local supermarket. The town of Tuba was a run down Native American populated town in the middle of Arizona. There was one beggar outside the grocery store. When he asked me for money, I offered him food and gave him soup and a few granola bars. As soon as I did this, two more people came over to me asking for food as well. Seeing the pattern, I knew I couldn’t keep giving out food. It made me wonder how money could come into this stop, gas, and go town.
We made a quick granola and almond milk breakfast and started driving. Our destination was the Petrified Forest National Park. We drove through lots of flat land and managed to arrive in the early afternoon. Chris and I sat through a quick introduction video to the park in the information center and then went and explored. The process of a tree becoming petrified wood was interesting. A tree would fall into a river and get stuck under the sand bank, sealing it off from oxygen. Minerals from the sand would then replace the cells of the tree, while still maintaing its bark texture. After thousands of years of this process, the tree would eventual turn into a rock with a variety of colors based on the mineral it was surrounded by. To be honest, this was one of the more bland national parks I have seen. It was relatively flat compared to Zion and Bryce Canyon and there really wasn’t to much besides rocks and a few hieroglyphics. While the sun was setting at the look out points, Chris and I stopped to meditate and soak up the moment.
It turns out we were on the old Route 66 route, which had been a pinnacle road for the United States to travel coast to coast.
We drove out of the park and continued towards our first city in our survey, Santa Fe. It was getting dark quickly so I pulled off a side road from the highway. Chris and I bought chicken legs for that night and we pulled out of mini BBQ. We grilled the legs in a vinaigrette, cajun marinate and had a garlic broccoli and rice on the side. IT WAS DELICIOUS! One of the few really satisfying meals we had on the road. Of course we pulled out some marshmellows later on to take advantage of the “small” fire we created. It was a nice being under the stars with a full belly and a day of good travelling.