A Donkey Worth Stopping For

It’s always a unique challenge to find an urban campsite after dark. I normally find a neighborhood or even a specific spot before the sun goes down. After the game yesterday, I drove past a Super Target and considered that lot but it’s so brightly lit. In fact, as I mentioned in the previous Hoboxian blog, finding darkness in a city is close to impossible. Beyond Target was a business park and since it was Friday night, I thought I’d be good in one of those lots, but the road away from Target swerved and zigged and sent me around four or five roundabouts before any of the business buildings appeared. Off road was too maintained but I couldn’t tell what it was – perhaps early construction sites. I eventually found a spot and was rather shocked to discover in the morning I was immediately next to a golf course and only a few hundred feet from the clubhouse. Eep! As usual, no one seemed to notice or care.

My Salt Lake plan was to hit the Family History Center and then move on. On the way there, I drove past a great looking art show/farmer’s market/street vendor extravaganza. Hoped that was an every Saturday thing. Looked fun. Almost bought some boiled peanuts (which I thought that was a southern, if not a Florida, thing).

Across the street from the genealogical library is the big Temple thingie – the place where Brigham Young said okay far enough away from those persecutors, let’s build a temple here. And they did. The image above was the last of what I’d hoped would be a fun scavenger hunt for all the fantastically designed identicards each of the Sisters who gave tours wore. I sat in the church (pictured below) listening to French, Spanish, English, and Japanese explanations of the Book of Mormon. The next time I tried to photograph them, I was admonished and I became very afraid. Outside that church, there is an ornate, beautiful “Star of David” window and I couldn’t get a good answer why it was there other than, “we believe in the Old testament too.”

I am very fond of the Mormon folks I’ve known and worked with. Everyone at this site was very friendly and I didn’t feel the least bit pressured to receive anything other than genuine kindness. In fact, when I mentioned I was a Jew, I got the strangest positive reaction. Turns out our wandering tribes dig each other (according to wikipedia, so you know …). Though, now that I think about it, that one guy stole my oversized french North By Northwest poster. Therefore don’t vote for Romney.

One mystery solved while I was at the Temple Square was why there is a beehive on the freeway signs. It comes from Brigham’s office, which was called the Bee House. I didn’t go in, but I was soooo disappointed the whole thing wasn’t in the shape of the hive.

Nice visit to Brig’s town. I have no complaints, other than the terrible, superwhite sculptures littering the place, though the one pictured below was quite bold. I hope that’s the big guy at least and not the son.

It was north after that.

The route plan for the first part – L.A. to British Columbia – was to go all the way up the 15 because I’d never seen northern Utah or other places along that drive. I assumed, since the southern, or canyon country, part of Utah was so incredible, the north was too. But like driving up Colorado, for some reason they put the main freeway artery on the flat, efficient part of the state. I looked at my map again and saw “Yellowstone” just off to the NE. I could swing over there and jump back on the 15 easily before Canada. I got as far as the Grand Tetons. The bookstore fellow at the Springville art museum warned me, “our beauty is really about the mountains.” He did not lie. I started this in a nice coffee and sandwich place called Dolce (and now sit outside its closed doors) in Jackson, Wyoming. I’ll likely crash here tonight.

The Tetons mountain range was very hazy – two major fires in Idaho and Montana made them almost invisible.

At the Teton visitor center. The sign says “BE BEAR AWARE – It all smells to a bear – etc”

Also at the visitor center. Not sure if they were expecting Nazis with lugers to attack, or if that is a scuba gun?

Speaking of unusual design, this is the second in my ongoing WHAT THE HELL DOES THIS SIGN MEAN series. The more I look at this one, I think it’s a municipal tombstone and it makes me sad.

But! Could it be that Mr. Sincerity (that’s me) has become cynical? I saw a bunch of cars pulled over just before sunset and as I went by, caught a brief glimpse of what they must have been looking at. I was unimpressed and thought how silly of them – I’m going to take a picture of them being silly. And then it became clear that it wasn’t a donkey, as I thought, or an elk, but a mama moose and her two children. By the time I’d arrived at the gate (which is a boundary for an elk preserve), she’d walked away and I could only get a distant look.

And this one’s for you, Klaas (not one of my Mormon friends)

Solomon wants us to grab some beer and dance with cowgirls, but this resort town is totally dead (and it’s only 11:30). Bedtime I guess. Until tomorrow night … sweet dreams!

3 thoughts on “A Donkey Worth Stopping For

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