LEVIA: my travel agent and navigation system

Here’s another guest post from Lee. I swear I didn’t pay him to write this!

For most trips that we take as a couple, I contribute a good amount of time in planning, picking kosher hotels and booking the flights. If it’s a sports trip then I’m also in charge of picking the venues and getting those tickets. This last trip the only thing I did was get the plane tickets based on the dates provided from MeLinda. I knew where we were going but the details beyond that were pretty unknown to me. MeLinda did put together an impressive agenda but I only took a quick look.

So I have a pretty good idea where the Grand Canyon is and figure if you drive around enough in Arizona you would find it, but since we flew into Las Vegas I was going to need my navigation system – LEVIA.

As soon as I got off the plane, my nav system knew I was hungry and that, of course, pizza would be my first option. It only took the system 15 minutes to find one of the most talked about pizza places in Vegas. Though LEVIA did give me attitude when I initially asked which way to go, its system rebooted and we found my pizza quickly.

LEVIA is a great program. It knows I enjoy hiking and immediately plotted out a course for Red Rock Canyon, just west of Las Vegas, and had several other hiking excursions mapped out in Nevada’s Valley of Fire State Park and some cool rock areas in Arizona. LEVIA even booked a personal guide that made for a great day trip to a remote area of the Paria Canyon area, which would have been a disaster without the extra guidance.

Though, sometimes when I left LEVIA behind it thought I was lost and would initiate a special program called FMH (Find My Husband). Yes, it is true I was a little confused but was able to scramble around enough that I eventually made it back to where I was supposed to be.

Lee_Best_Friends_dogThe navigation system even knew to adjust the program to give me a day off from hiking and planned a day for me at the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, Utah, and another day on a scenic boat trip on the quiet part of the Colorado River just below the Glen Canyon Dam.

LEVIA continued to impress me, especially when it pulled up a great BBQ restaurant in Flagstaff, Ariz., on the way from the Grand Canyon’s south rim to Sedona. Sometimes LEVIA would make a restaurant mistake but it was rare, and I have the unrated version of LEVIA so the f-word was used liberally especially toward a restaurant called Houston’s.

Now I had to download an upgrade but it was worth it when LEVIA found me a strip club on the Grand Canyon’s north rim. (You can find out more about this part of the trip by reading this post.)

As the trip continued, LEVIA continued to do a great job of packing as much stuff as possible into a 10-day trip in and around the Grand Canyon. LEVIA found a great place to have an outside late lunch after a long day of hiking, and also knew it would fit my budget a lot better to eat lunch at this swanky Sedona resort rather than dinner. It’s amazing the type of things you can program into a navigation system.

LEVIA even found me a good place to watch football for a few hours in the Las Vegas airport when my Sunday afternoon flight was delayed.

I signed up for trial version of LEVIA when I was working at The Wichita Eagle back in the early 1990s and first found this navigation system, and now that I have the full version I continue to be happy I made a lifetime commitment.

Here are a few photos of me with my navigation system LEVIA (MeLinda’s maiden name is Via):

hiking at the Red Rock Canyon National Wildlife area just a few miles west of Las Vegas

hiking at the Red Rock Canyon National Wildlife area just a few miles west of Las Vegas

Here we are at the Fire Wave in Nevada's Valley of Fire State Park.

hiking to the Fire Wave in Nevada’s Valley of Fire State Park.

Lake Powell are, just above the Glen Canyon Dam

Lake Powell area, just above the Glen Canyon Dam

on our White Pockets guided trip inside the Paria Canyon area of northern Arizona

on our White Pockets guided trip inside the Paria Canyon area of northern Arizona

lee_melinda_north_rim

north rim of the Grand Canyon

if I seem nervous, it's because MeLinda kept telling me to back up closer to the edge as we took this a selfie at the south rim of the Grand Canyon

if I seem nervous, it’s because MeLinda kept telling me to back up closer to the edge as we took this selfie at the south rim of the Grand Canyon

melinda_lee_south_rim_2

south rim of the Grand Canyon 

 

This entry was posted in Lee, travel.

2 Comments

  1. Erik November 9, 2013 at 7:49 pm #

    LOVE THIS! What a great post :-) Affectionate in a playful way. My wife is a non-traveler, if she wrote a post for my blog it’d be one of the seven signs of the apocalypse :-)
    Erik recently posted…Tapas Barinn – Adventures in Icelandic Cuisine, Part Two

    • Melinda November 19, 2013 at 5:00 pm #

      Thanks for the comment, Erik. Lee is not a writer but he’s really enjoyed writing posts for the blog and they often surprise … like this one did.

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