Bryce Canyon and Zion national park
While we were still in Salt Lake, we decided to take some hours to look at the salt planes that we believed were very close to the city. As we drove from Nevada to Salt Lake in the dark a week earlier we had not seen exactly where they were. It turned out that we had to drive almost to the Nevada border, about an hour, but when we finally got there we had real fun on the salt and it was pretty amazing to see the salt just lying there looking like a layer of snow.
As we had all been invited to a place called Pirates Cove the following weekend, our plan was to explore a bit on the way.
Our first stop was Bryce Canyon and what a surprise. I have to say that we did not expect that amazing scenery and beauty. The canyons are nothing short of spectacular and probably we felt it even stronger as the night before we came the first snow of the winter had fallen so all the red rocks had a new fallen snow making it even more magical.
The following day we changed scenery as Zion national park has a very different and distinguished landscape, sometimes it felt like we were in a middle of an old cowboy movie. No wonder as this is “Indians country” that was evident mostly in the souvenir shops selling bows, arrows and other beautifully handmade Indians things.
We had an early night in Zion as we were planning a long day ahead of us.
First we took house on Clara McDermott and her husband Jim. A visit to their home has been a must on our To Do list since we started hearing about it from the Blue Diamond trip participants. And wow, what a visit. What impressed us most were not the luxurious surroundings and facilities but the people themselves.
Clara is a legend in our business and now we fully understand why. She started by taking us to the pool house where we just stood and listened to her insights for about an hour. She was very open to all the questions that we had and we learned that her road to success was absolutely not a straight one – but one that build character.
Clara and Jim then took us on two golf cars around the property and we (especially the women in the group) went ballistic over the little “kids house” in the garden. A very popular place, apparently, for the grandkids and the great-grand kids to have sleepovers and play – and no wonder about that.
The grand finale of the tour was the library. Hard to describe in words, but the photos show that we are not talking about any ordinary library. Would probably be suitable for a whole town. Jim had just published a book about his experience from the war in Vietnam and he took some time to tell us about it before giving us all a copy.
We drove away in a strange silence, all contemplating in our own way the possibilities life offers and how people use their opportunities in different ways.
Our next stop was only about a 10 minutes drive, to the home of Peter and Kaoru Bannister. As can be seen in our earlier blog, we (Benedikt and Gudrun) visited Peter and Kaoru in Japan last June. Last year we also attended Peter´s 70th birthday in their mansion in England. So now we were off to see their third (and final) home. Their other residencies are also very impressive, but we loooved this one. What a setting! Warm and welcoming – a great contrast to the harsh nature surrounding it. We just loved it and perhaps the fact that it is situated on a very lush golf course had something to do with it.
Peter and Kaoru took us all out for lunch that turned out to be a very memorable one, as Liv and Chris got a phone call during lunch with the great news about a brand new grand son. New and special memories are constantly taking place and continue to make our journey the trip of a lifetime.