Finding Ron and Dinosaurs

I love reflexology. I can always tell when my kidney is gonna hurt, so I chug a lot of cranberry juice. And chase it with moonshine.” -Ron

Before embarking on this epic road trip of ours I did just the tiniest bit of research into possible hikes (literally like 10 minutes tops, I didn’t really prepare for this trip in way of itinerary) and found the Willis Creek slot canyon hike in the Grand Staircase-Escalante.

The Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument happens to be smack in-between Bryce and Zion Canyons so it made for a perfect addition to our travels. After leaving Bryce we made our way down the highway to the turnoff. Of course we got hungry, and conveniently enough there was a little restaurant and lodge called the Buffalo Bistro that was calling our names. (By the way, if you are ever near Glendale, UT you should definitely stop in and grab a bite!) We ended up sitting near the grill where the owner, Ron, was hard at work. As we ate our delicious dinner of boar and buffalo ribs we got to talking to Ron, and one way or another he offered me a job for the month of August (unfortunately, and I am oh so sad about this, I leave the country early September and have to get all of my appointments in before then) as a waitress and sous chef. You have no idea how much I want to go back and work for this man. Not only would I live on site but I would work only 4 days a week…leaving 3 days of fishing, exploring, and hiking my way though national parks each week. Once in a lifetime opportunity and I am debating cancelling everything to go (oh if only I could).

Out of the blue Ron asks us, “Hey, wanna see a dinosaur track?” Now I have forgotten to mention this before, but Kathryn and I have been trying, and trying, and TRYING to see dinosaur exhibits and/or tracks. Each time we saw a sign for it we would pull off and go, and each time they would be closed. So when Ron mentioned this Kathryn and I of course readily agreed…we couldn’t even believe it. What are the chances that this man would randomly have a dinosaur track and ask us if we wanted to see it? Fate. We went up the stairs to his house (he built the place back in 2003, restaurant downstairs, lives upstairs. It’s awesome) and showed us the dinosaur track as he fed his pets. He was showing us the moonshine that he got from Tennessee when I saw books about reflexology and asked him about it, prompting the quote at the beginning of this post. Ron ranks high on Kathryn and my ‘favorite people’ list. All we wanted to do was stay there and drink moonshine with that crew, but the road was once again singing it’s siren song and off we went.

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