After a long hiatus, here’s the final part of the Southwestern Road Trip. Finally! I know! Forgot already. But here’s the last part of the story.
Our final morning in Flagstaff dawned bright and early. We were packed up and ready to hit the road to head south to Phoenix. We were planning to be in Phoenix by lunch time to meet up with Vin’s cousin Becky, and the drive would take about 2 hours total. So we decided to meander down to Phoenix by way of Sedona. We ended up hanging out at Red Rock State Park, visited Cathedral Rock (which Becky, Vin and I climbed in a previous visit), and then drove on to Phoenix.
While I was speaking with the manager of the Embassy Suites (they fixed our hot water, but Vin’s and my room never got above 60 F the whole time we were there (it was cranking at full blast and the technician had been there to get it going as well he could – he tried his best I’m sure but the equipment was old) and after I explained this to the Embassy Suites manager, he comped 2 of the nights for Vin’s and my room! But while I was speaking with the manager, Abah and Mak posed with some bikes that were in the parking lot:
[[image:us312.jpg:Abah the biker dude:center:0]]
[[image:us313.jpg:Mak the biker chick:center:0]]
Then we hit the road and went off to Sedona. Some pictures taken from the car:
[[image:us314.jpg:Red rocky outcroppings:center:0]]
[[image:us315.jpg:Winding road with lovely yellow leaves:center:0]]
The road was winding and beautiful with a river on one side. There were some cool looking houses there too. We stopped by Red Rock State Park to catch a few more sights:
[[image:us316.jpg:Red Rock State Park:center:0]]
[[image:us317.jpg:Mak facing the visitor center:center:0]]
[[image:us318.jpg:Red tree at Red Rock State Park!:center:0]]
[[image:us319.jpg:Small fountain by the Visitor Center:center:0]]
We read about the formation of the rocks and flora and fauna at the Visitor Center. Then we headed out, deciding to hit Cathedral Rock (the one we climbed with Becky last March) before pushing on to Phoenix.
[[image:us322.jpg:Vin and me at Cathedral Rock:center:0]]
[[image:us323.jpg:Abah and Mak at Cathedral Rock:center:0]]
As we headed out of town, here’s the crowd coming up north from Phoenix for a nice weekend in Sedona. So happy we were headed in the other direction! The cars were bumper to bumper for miles outside of Sedona.
[[image:us324.jpg:Traffic jam northbound from Phoenix:center:0]]
We got to Phoenix around lunch time and hung out at Becky and Phil’s apartment with Phil, Becky and their friend Janet. We had a tar pau burrito lunch at their place.
[[image:us325.jpg:Becky and Phil:center:0]]
[[image:us326.jpg:Mak and me at the parking lot of the apartment:center:0]]
After that we headed out to the Phoenix Desert Botanical Gardens for a small outing. Mak thoroughly enjoyed the crazy amount of cacti, big and small:
[[image:us327.jpg:Mak and Abah by a saguaro:center:0]]
[[image:us328.jpg:Mak, Abah and Becky by a giant saguaro:center:0]]
[[image:us329.jpg:Mak by a giant octopus-like cactus:center:0]]
[[image:us330.jpg:Fascinated by the cute little roundies:center:0]]
[[image:us331.jpg:Abah, Becky, Mak and Vin at the desert botanical garden:center:0]]
[[image:us332.jpg:Becky with Vin in the background:center:0]]
[[image:us335.jpg:Mak and me:center:0]]
[[image:us336.jpg:Mak by more giant funky cacti:center:0]]
[[image:us337.jpg:Look at the monster behind us!:center:0]]
And then there were monarch butterflies in an exhibit.
[[image:us334.jpg:Mari hisap madu:center:0]]
After the Desert Botanical Garden, Abah, Mak, Vin and I went to check into our hotel and rest up. We would meet up with Phil and Becky, and her friends Janet, Kurt and Bruce for dinner at Buca di Beppo’s in Phoenix. Here’s the restaurant:
[[image:us338.jpg:Buca di Beppo’s:center:0]]
What’s a dinner outing with no food pictures right?
[[image:us339.jpg:Out of focus Frutti di Mare pasta:center:0]]
[[image:us342.jpg:Ice cream and chocolate cake:center:0]]
[[image:us343.jpg:Another yummy chocolate cake and ice cream:center:0]]
We ate “family style” so shared all the food (including the desserts) around the table. All in all, it was a fun and giggly time with all of us getting slap happy giggles and laughing about all the funny stories that went around the table. Here’s the group around the table. Clockwise from left front, Bruce, Kurt, Becky, Janet, Mak, Me, Abah, Vin and Phil:
Here’s the group outside the restaurant after the fun and the feast. We’re full to bursting here.
All in all, it was a wonderful trip full of amazing sights and ended up with good old family fun dinner. I cannot even say how much fun we had dining out with Becky and Phil and their friends. It was just a wonderful time. Thanks for dinner, Phil! We’ll see you guys soon, I hope.
And to end it all, the last few photostitched items. Happy New Year!
[[image:usph48.jpg:Red Rock State Park:center:0]]
[[image:usph49.jpg:Mak at Red Rock State Park:center:0]]