Tuesday, August 28: Salt Lake City
A study in constrast
The last day of our vacation. I am typing this sitting in the terminal waiting for the plane. It is scheduled to depart at 11:35pm, so we’ll be flying all night. I am *not* looking forward to this.
Amy got up first thing in the morning, grabbed breakfast while I was showering, and then I drove her to the Salt Lake Temple to do church stuff for an hour or two.
While she was doing that, I returned and had breakfast with Mike. Then I did final packing, which mostly involved repeated weighings of our bags, and shuffling things from bag to bag to keep the weight of the maximum under 50 pounds. In the end, we had four bags that were 48 and some change and one that was 49 and some change.
Then Mike and I took two boxes to the post office and mailed them. One was full of books and papers, and it was very heavy. The other was some misc camping stuff that wouldn’t fit in the duffle.
About this time, Amy called, so I drove over and got her. Then we carried the last of the stuff down, checked out, and left the hotel.
We drove up to Brigham City so that we could attend an open house of an LDS temple that was not yet consecrated. After consecration, outsiders are not allowed in. Brigham City is about an hour north of Salt Lake City.
When we got up there, we stopped at McD’s for lunch, then took the car through a car wash as it was pretty gross after 9 weeks of driving through the wild.
We then drove to a shopping mall, where we parked and took a bus to the temple. There was an amazingly large number of people cycling through the tour. We first went to one of many rooms temporarily set up in the parking garage to see a movie talking about the temple. Then we put on shoe coverings (later, the people doing temple stuff will wear some kind of slipper). There were plaques set up describing the different rooms, but there were no tour guides per se. There was essentially just a long line of people slowly filing through the temple.
From the outside, it looks like there should be a few big spaces, but in reality there are a lot of smaller rooms inside.
Afterwards, we went through a “reception”, where we got a cookie and a bottle of water. The water was appreciated, as it was in the mid to high 90’s. We walked around a bit outside, looking at the temple, then took the bus back to the parking lot, got into our car, and started heading south.
For something completely different, on the way south, we stopped at an air force base to visit their museum. Unfortunately, we got there at 3:45 and they closed at 4:30. They had oodles of planes there, including a strange helicopter that had two counter-rotating props on adjacent stalks. They even had an SR71. They had a bunch of bombs, as well as a mock-up of the “device”, the first atomic bomb fired off at Trinity.
Unfortunately, much too soon (around 4:15) they were shutting down the inside museum. I got a quick walk through the outside airplanes, but I didn’t have enough time to really look at them.
So we continue south. We looked for a place to eat, and we finally settled on a fish place. However the GPS led us to a place that didn’t have anything close to a fish restaurant. We eventually gave up and headed back to the highway. Along the way, we ran across a Chili’s, so we had dinner there.
We then went south to Salt Lake City. It was too early to go to the airport. We had a couple of hours to kill. So we parked near Temple Square. We got a tour of the Conference Center, where the Music and the Spoken Word had been taped. Since it was not a crowded time, we ended up getting a private tour. There is a lot of original art there. More surprisingly, the roof is set up like a large park, with walkways, lots of plants, and water channels. Amy surprised the guide by knowing that a particular tree was a bristlecone pine.
Returning the car wasn’t as hard as I feared. Neither was carting all of our stuff to the airport. We got to the JetBlue counter at 9:00, only to find that they didn’t open until 9:30. At that time, we got our backs checked in, went through security, and made our way to the gate.
Soon it will be time to board and then hopefully sleep.