Woke up in Grand Junction and kept pushing west. We dipped down to Moab because the name rang a faint bell. The mountains gave way to Martian cliffs, and I enjoyed delicious French toast at the Canyon Steak & Waffle House. The people around us looked healthy and ready for adventure, but we weren’t about to pay $30 to enter the park and look at some arches. We returned to the interstate.

A small green sign said No Services Next 106 miles. It’s the most desolate stretch of interstate in the USA. A spray of clouds sent the light pouring down over the cliffs. “It looks religious over there,” said C.

As we crossed the Nevada state line, fireworks bloomed in the parking lot of a Chevron station. We made good time and hit Vegas a night earlier than scheduled. “Warm Leatherette” played on the dashboard as a sea of light appeared in the valley like a hallucination, and we booked a relatively cheap room on the strip. There are televisions in the bathroom because we should not be alone with our thoughts, and I felt very modern, watching protests in China while I showered in a glossy Vegas hotel.

The Normal – Warm Leatherette

Mute, 1978 | More