but we are the proud owners of two brand new trailer tires! I know you are all green with envy over this new development. The new tires also meant that we pulled into our hotel (where we had reservations) very late. It wasn't supposed to be quite this late, but with the not-quite-as-early-as-we-had-hoped start, two hours for dealing with tires, and losing an hour to the time change... well, it got later and later.
We were driving happily along this morning, having driven for maybe an hour (if that), when J. hears a noise, says something along the lines of, "That's not good," pulls over to the side of the road and gets out to see what's happening. It turns out we had lost both the wheel cover to the right tire on the trailer as well as the tread. We have no idea of the cover came off first, thus damaging the tire, or if the tread came off and took the cover with it.
The good news was that we had a spare, nothing else was wrong, we were only 8 miles away from Winslow, AZ (and there aren't a whole lot of larger towns in that part of the state), and it wasn't raining. J. was able to change the tire (I helpfully held the trailer door so it wouldn't bang in the wind and watched the tumbleweeds blow by) and we drove into Winslow hoping to find a place that sold tires and hoped they would have the size we needed. After asking in a store along Route 66, we were directed to the local tire-appliance-furniture store. (K. announced that he thought the store was, "So cool!") The nice man was able to tell us that nothing else was wrong and replaced both tires, all in a half an hour or so.
And what did we do during that time? The nice man also directed us to a local park where the van full of people ran off some energy.
It was incredibly windy, thought not too cold. I'm not sure I've ever been in that part of Arizona when it wasn't incredibly windy. The wind continued through New Mexico, though, so it made it impossible to picnic. We ended up passing snacks back to the masses to keep them fed for most of the afternoon so they wouldn't get hungry and start snacking on their seatmates. The drive was not improved by the nearly continuous dust storms we drove through.
All in all, it could have been much worse, but I don't think we will remember it as being one of our better driving days. If we get in at a decent time tomorrow night, I'll try to post about our visit to the Grand Canyon.