When we originally planned we were looking at about 2400 miles and three or four days of driving.
The first day was pretty uninspiring. We made it to Lincoln, Nebraska after about 850 miles through Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Iowa. Lots of fields and windmills, and that was about it! We had our sights set on Lincoln, because one of my former teammates at the University of Tennessee transferred to Nebraska for volleyball (Go Huskers!).
The weather was great until early evening when we hit some killer rain. But it stopped and cleared just in time to see an outrageous sunset over the flat countryside of Nebraska. I wish a photo could have done it justice. We stopped and had dinner with Mary, just in time to see the Kings beat the Blackhawks in Game 7 overtime! It was so awesome to see her after about a year had passed since we were in Knoxville together and awesome to know that I was going to be in LA for the final series of the Stanley Cup.
For all you hockey fans please please check out this hilarious link from the Late Night Show
Day two we woke up feeling good, ready to conquer another long day. Originally looking at the map we were going to try for Arizona, but that was overly ambitious and we only made it to Albuquerque, New Mexico. Not too shabby considering we drove another 900+ miles on day two. We drove from Lincoln straight to Denver, Colorado and dropped down to stop at an AWESOME Mexican place in Santa Fe called Casa Chimayo. My mom hunted the place down on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives. We had some Mexican beers and split chicken enchiladas and were on our way for another hour or so to Abluquerque.
We were definitely a little worn out and crabby after the second day, so it was good to get a good meal and get in bed early. Since we crammed the drive into 3 days we had about 800 miles still to go to get to the West Coast.
We stopped for huevos rancheros at Earl’s in New Mexico before heading out. It was an awesome family joint on a Native American reservation. Day three was pretty much all desert driving through New Mexico, and Arizona until we finally hit the California border. We had a late breakfast and we decided that we could wait until we found an In-N-Out for our next meal, since Mom had never had it!
We thought we could make it through the desert to the nearest California In-N-Out, buuut we passed an exit without it not realizing there was not another exit for 55 miles…And we almost ran out of gas! Luckily, there was a desert oasis in the middle of nowhere that saved us. Because that would not have been fun!