By Kamille Robertson
The last time I went to the Grand Canyon, I was six years old. The visit came about because my family was moving from Nevada to Texas and we wanted to check out this wonder on the way. I remember walking to the edge of the canyon after sitting in the car for hours, staring down into the infinite abyss, and then looking back at my dad and thinking, “This is it?”
Fast forward 17 years later and I am standing at the edge of the Grand Canyon for a second time. It is breathtaking. There is snow on the ground, couples walking their dogs, and very few kids running around (must be something about the edge of a canyon that scares parents). The canyon is quiet in sound but loud with color and depth. It is a bright rustic red and orange but, in the crevasses, it is a dark purple. The South Rim shows melted snow running down the side of the canyon and patches of solid ice where the sun has not yet touched. I found a flat rock where not many people were. My boyfriend and I had just begun to meditate when a woman interrupted us to ask if we could take a picture of her. She was from South Africa; so is my boyfriend. They began to speak in Afrikaans and he learned that she has a safari in South Africa and teaches at the same elementary school at which his mom teaches. He misses his home in South Africa, so to meet someone who tells him how beautiful it still is makes him happy, which in turn, makes me happy.
Everyone here is happy and friendly. Perhaps it is because we are all standing on top of this heavenly place looking at the valley below, soaking in the sun and breathing the same crisp air. Perhaps it is because we are all there to escape the pressures and stresses of everyday life in a big city, or just escaping life in general. There is nothing to worry about on top of this great place, except maybe falling off.
When night falls, the canyon looks like it is going under water. The canyon sinks from the bottom up, swallowed by the spreading dark blues and purples that were only hiding in the crevasses mere hours before.
The temperature drops 10 degrees and everyone starts zipping up their jackets and patting their arms for warmth. Luckily, I am wrapped in layers of clothing and in my boyfriend’s arms (cue the “awww”). We stay until the sun is completely down and the canyon is completely dark, then we head back to our hotel- Best Western Premiere- and bowled. Yes, there was a bowling alley, a bar, a billiards/ game room and a hot tub in our hotel; Premiere indeed!
After that serene visit to the Grand Canyon, we drove back home to Los Angeles, where the stresses of big city living awaited our arrival. Of course, the silver lining in this is that all the Los Angeles stresses and pressures that we live in our days-to-day lives are just another reason to pack up and revisit the tranquility of the Grand Canyon.
Grand Canyon: located in Northern Arizona. The Grand Canyon is 277 miles (446 km) long, up to 18 miles (29 km) wide and attains a depth of over a mile (6,000 feet or 1,800 meters).
Infinite: limitless or endless in space, extent, or size; impossible to measure or calculate.
Abyss: a deep or seemingly bottomless canyon.
Rustic: of or relating to the countryside; rural.
Crevasse: a deep open crack, especially one in a glacier.
Afrikaans: language descended from Dutch and spoken mainly in South Africa and Namibia.
Safari: an expedition to observe or hunt animals in their natural habitat.
Cue: a thing said or done that serves as a signal to an actor or other performer to enter or to begin their speech or performance.
Bowling alley: a place where you can play the game of tenpin bowling as a sport.
Billiards: a game usually for two people, played on a billiard table, in which three balls are struck with cues into pockets around the edge of the table.
Hot tub/ Jacuzzi: a large bath with a system of underwater jets of water to massage the body.
Tranquil: free from disturbance; calm.
Featured image by Grand Canyon National Park on Flickr
Kamille Robertson is a senior studying theatre at the School of Dramatic Arts. She was born in California but raised in the deep south of Texas. Kamille hopes to land a career somewhere in the world of entertainment, as an actor, writer, costume designer… She is casting a wide net and hoping to find her niche. She has had a variety of experiences from working at Walt Disney World to working as a server at a little surf restaurant on South Padre Island to being a flower girl at the USC Flowershop. Kamille loves to read books, study French and women studies, and of course, watch screen and live performances. She hopes to one day write a book about her experiences, but not for a very long time, she has a lot of life to live.