It has been an interesting little rest day in Van Horn. We have been staying at a great hotel, which we found out today is steeped in history. El Capitan was a grand old hotel of the last century (opened 1930). It was then bought by and operated as a bank for several years, until the current owner purchased it and started to restore it to its former glory. The first phase of the renovation was completed recently, and is still in the development process: the rooms and the lobby are complete, but they are working on a restaurant, bar, conference room and fitness centre. We were lucky enough to start chatting to David Luna who has been directing the redevelopment, and whose father and grandfather before him worked at the hotel. David gave us the full tour of the hotel from the basement, where he pointed out a number of the original features, including where the ghosts usually hang out (!) right up to the stunning view from the roof, where they are also thinking of putting a rooftop bar.
As well as the usual rest day activities (followers, we will not list them again, we know you know), we also found a half-completed jigsaw on one of the tables just as we were leaving breakfast. 3 hours and a few cups of coffee later, it was miraculously done. We got so carried away, we then dismantled it and started a second one. Well, there was a crackling fire, wonderful swing music in the background, and Kat even had her slippers on…talk about chilling out.
Then this afternoon, Russ and Laura arrived. They are … wait for it … cycling the perimeter of the USA. Except they are going in the opposite direction to us and are taking a slightly different route. As we have come to expect, they are also considerably more intrepid: they sold everything they owned before coming on this trip, and are camping as well as staying in hotels. When they arrived today, they had been camping out for the last 5 days in subzero temperatures, and had been carrying 5 days’ worth of food and water with them. Kat could not even lift Laura’s bike up… oh well.
So, now we are sitting (again by the fire) writing this, and chatting with Russ over a beer. We might just have to try and finish that jigsaw before we go to bed. Rock n Roll!