"So why are you here?"
This was a phrase commonly said to me and Isabel the second that people discovered we were from Manhattan. And to be honest, it was a little unclear as to how two girls from New York City ended up in Arizona.
I have known Isabel for 13 years. Our friendship grew when she began inviting me to her birthday parties in lower school and she has been one of my closest friends ever since. As our senior year came to a close, we decided to take a trip together--one last hurrah. We fumbled over a few ideas of where we could go. We considered going to Europe before realizing the amount of money that would cost and decided why not spend our time getting to know the US? Both of us hadn't really seen much of the country that we were living in.
Isabel is an explorer at heart and I kept imagining the photographs I would take wherever we ended up. We put the two together and decided to pack our bags and head to the Grand Canyon. Our first stop: Flagstaff, AZ.
We stayed at the Weatherford Hotel, a charming place that was notorious for being haunted, a fact that we weren't aware of until we had booked our room. Our room had its own bathroom with an old clawfoot bathtub. Isabel and I struggled to clean ourselves, spraying the curtain and floor before getting the hang of it.
The next few days were filled with horseback riding through fields, chairlifts over mountains, and of course, the Grand Canyon. We can both attest that visiting the Grand Canyon is like a religious experience. As we sat on the edge of the canyon, we watched the sun cast red and purple hues onto the rocks before disappearing.
Our next stop was Sedona. Before we boarded the shuttle we made our way to Firecreek, a coffee shop we had been going to religiously every morning (they had excellent wifi).
In Sedona we spent our days exploring the mountains, taking Pink Jeep Tours and relaxing by the pool. On our very last day we woke up at 4 AM to catch a hot air balloon flight, an amazing experience that ended with a landing on the highway (we were told it was perfectly normal). We arrived home to overheated Manhattan six days later, left reminiscing and dreaming about the mountains.
Until next time,