Many people take a side trip from Las Vegas to visit the Grand Canyon. So I can’t be the first to comment on the jarring juxtaposition of ephemeral, glitzy, often tacky and ever-changing Vegas with a desertous, majestic, inhumane canyon carved from bedrock over billions of years. Don’t misunderstand me: I think Las Vegas truly beautiful beyond description. While there, the phrases “pursuit of happiness” and “only in America” persistently flashed like neon-colored idée fixe in my addled, overstimulated brain. I lost sense of time and mortality. I loved Vegas. But then I ventured a few hours out into the desert and there a beautiful canyon crushed my patriotic smallness and petty sense of self with the sheer vastness of time and space it measures. I can’t think of two visions of the universe more far apart from each other – though physically separated by a short bus ride.
These two photos of my wife on our 10th anniversary trip – and two Bob Dylan songs for captions – break it down for me:
I’ve previously written on “When the Deal Goes Down” as the perfect love song for my wife here. She anchors both of these photos – and experiences – as she anchors my life.