To Pocatello – June 08

To get to my mom’s house a few weeks ago, we got up ridiculously early, I mean I set the alarm for 4 AM. There is a nonstop flight from Boston to Salt Lake City, but another route with a layover in Phoenix was several hundred dollars less expensive (at least for two round trips) so we chose that.

The flight from Phoenix to SLC went right over the Grand Canyon. That’s not surprising. The Grand Canyon takes up a big fraction of northern Arizona. I did get a picture of it from the air, though:

You know how some people say, “When I’m in London, I always stay at the Ritz”? Well, when I’m driving from Salt Lake City to Pocatello I try to eat at J.C.’s Country Diner in Elwood (I thought it was in Tremonton until I checked the business card). Take the I-15/84 Tremonton exit #376 about a mile off the highway.

We’ve stopped for lunch or a snack at many places on that route over the years. In the SLC and Ogden metro area there are lots of suburban malls just off the highway with places to eat with as little personality as any in the Boston area. This one has plenty of personality in the decor, menu, and layout. One quirk that I like is that the mens room wallpaper has a border of lighthouses. Why, I always wonder, lighthouses, up there 800 miles from the nearest one? Just because someone likes them, I guess. The food is good and inexpensive and there are always local people who look as though they’ve worked up an appetite moving irrigation equipment eating there.
J.C’s is not fooling about the “Country Diner.” There was a tractor parked out front:

… a truck full of hay in the parking lot:

… and a beautiful view of fields and the Wasatch mountains behind the restaurant:

It was a gorgeous day, not too hot, with that clear intermountain West air and snow on the mountaintops. There are beautiful days in the Boston area, mostly in the fall or late spring, that make me say, “sure, California, but when we have weather like this, why would anyone want to live anywhere but New England?” I felt that way when I took the picture above — when they have weather like that, why would anyone want to live anywhere but Tremonton, Utah?

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