On the Road to Nowhere: Part One or Salt Lake City & Antelope Island


2020 turned out to be a year when everything went upside down, and our crazy family of five, having firmly decided to ride through the storm in the eye of the hurricane, had no choice but to cancel yours truly's dream trip to France and re-book our airplane tickets for Salt Lake City instead. You might think that Utah sounds less exciting - at least that's what I had thought - and oh, how wrong was I to think that! If you want to find out how the great American West can blow your mind to the point that one might - even if only for a moment! - forget about their Parisian dreams, read on!

Day 1

We woke up at the crack of dawn on - or, to be more precise, at 4:45 am, drove to Jacksonville, Fl, jumped on a plane, then on another one, and at noon Mountain Time we were already in Salt Lake City. Harsh but fast, and both of the plane rides were as smooth as they could be.

Salt Lake City met us with the beautiful Wasatch mountains, scorching heat, and - alas! - empty streets. My most vivid first memory of Salt Lake City were scooters and bikes that were available for rent in the street - which was so very cool - but no one seemed to be riding them and some scooters were just left laying on sidewalks, which left us all with an indelible impression that the city was in a post-apocalyptic state, recovering after a zombie invasion. Come to think of it, I guess it somewhat was.

We stayed at the Radisson hotel downtown, with an amazing view of the mountains and the Capitol Building, and we had a feeling that the hotel was really great, but it was hard to tell since pretty much everything was closed - the pool, the restaurant, the room service. Overall though, the hotel was in the great location, and the front desk agent who checked us in was very polite - so this property gets 4 stars out of 5, in our humble opinion. It was also at this hotel, that we, the Harrisons, firmly decided that we were not going to let "The-Virus-That-Must-Not-Be-Named" and everything associated with it play tricks on us, and therefore, the conditions and circumstances that were related to the state of society in July 2020 will not be mentioned in this post anymore. We shall deliberately focus only on the positive aspects of the trip and life as a whole.

The first day went by as if in a haze. From our hotel, we walked to a beautiful mall (which, as I later found out, was City Creek Center) with multiple high-end boutiques ranging from Tiffany & Co. to my favorite L'Occitane. As moms out there would know, shopping with your entire family in tow is pretty much impossible, so I just kept ogling the immaculate shop windows all the while trying to find a place where we could finally eat. After traveling for over six hours, all of us were starving, so when we spotted Johnny Rockets among multiple shops and restaurants, we headed over there without a moment's hesitation. The spicy hamburger I pretty much swallowed there to utter astonishment of my whole family was probably the best burger I had in my life. Then again, every time I fly, I get absolutely ravenous, especially for burgers, and they always taste so good! (If anyone knows the answer to why this keeps happening, please let me know. I've been dying to unravel this mystery for quite a while!).

After the delicious lunch, we walked across the street to Temple Square and walked around there for a while, gawking at the jaw-dropping, monumental buildings and admiring multicolored flowers that seemed to be pretty much everywhere! The heat, however, was unbearable (even though we live in Southeast Georgia and are used to hot weather, the heat in Salt Lake City felt entirely different - like you were being sauteed on a frying pan), so we hurried back to the hotel for a nap.