I spent my first night away from San Diego on a friend’s couch in LA. It was a sort of gradual departure into this road trip, as opposed to one big “here I go!”
On my second night I arrived into Flagstaff, Arizona. Initial thoughts were: it’s cold, I’m too old (at 28) to hostel, will all the hostel guests be hippies, and so on and so forth.
I hadn’t stayed in a hostel since I was 26 and took a solo trip to Charleston, and from having lived the past two years I can tell you that 26 and 28 are two very different animals. All that said, hosteling went fine despite me being a little out of place (read: I’m too mainstream). They were all hippies in one way or another.
To my Californian eyes, Flagstaff is a big town/small city with a historic district flanked on each side by more contemporary dining and shopping (contemporary meaning Sizzler and Best Buy, thrilled I’m sure). I stayed in the historic district – a mishmash of pubs, low key restaurants, gift shops and art – and explored the span of it in under 3 hours. I could’ve made better time had I not been trying to kill it; after all, I’m out here without anything to do. Hours can pass slowly when you only have yourself for company.
One of my favorite things to do when traveling is people watch, and Flagstaffians (made that up, hope it flies!) all look like misfits, alternative types and/or campers. It’s the Portland of Arizona. And that about sums up Flagstaff.
Learn more about Flagstaff here.