October 23, 2016
Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
I had the great joy of meeting up with my dear friend, Birgit, in Utah while she was on a tour of the southwest US for a few weeks. I love this person, and not just because she brings me a suitcase full of German chocolate every time I see her!
She was in America as an exchange student my junior year of high school and lived with my family for almost a year, so she’ll always be my German sister. We also had a Japanese sister, Saki. Since the 3 of us were a set, it always feels incomplete when 2 of us are together without the 3rd…we missed you, Saki! Birgit and her boyfriend, Peter, had an ambitious to-see list from California to Colorado and back again, so I was honored that they carved out a day and a half to spend with us, and we were delighted that we were able to add a desination to their list that seemed to be a great experience for everybody.
When Brad & I explored this area in 2008 we didn’t have time to make it over to Bryce Canyon – but it was so beautiful! I know that the Grand Canyon is a bit of the belle of the ball in the national parks, but I would venture to say that Bryce is more beautiful & interesting in a lot of ways…just way smaller.
Brad took the girls to do their Junior Ranger activities so that I could hike with Birgit – I wouldn’t let something as insignificant as a language barrier from talking a good friend’s ear off for a good long while. Luckily for me, Birgit’s English is amazing, even though she claims she rarely uses it. Peter stayed pretty quiet, claiming that his English wasn’t that great. But I think it was easier for him to just smile and listen rather than try to get a word in edge-wise. It was wonderful to catch up, and I was long overdue for a chance to talk in person with a good friend.
The next morning we hosted them for brunch at our campsite before they headed north to Arches National Park, and they showed us amazing pictures of some of their other recent adventures to New Zealand, Australia, and Iceland.
It was such a wonderful, refreshing thing to spend time with my dear friend and share the joy of experiencing a brand new place together.