Tucson 32

This past Thursday marked the 32nd anniversary of Marcia’s and my wedding date. Time certainly flies when you’re having fun with your favorite person! After hunkering down hard through the Anno Virum, we decided to take an actual trip, and eat actual meals, in an actual hotel, with other actual people. Ye Gods! Remember how that used to work? After scouting out a variety of options, we decided to drive down to Tucson to stay for a few days of rest, relaxation and restoration at Canyon Ranch. (Plus one night at the Hilton Resort at El Conquistador). It was a lovely trip to a beautiful locale, a very nice getaway on all fronts. The accommodations were comfy and clean, the food was out of this world good (and quite healthy!), and the various services and treatments offered were delightful. We also squeezed in a couple of hikes nearby, and had a fair amount of down time hanging out around on the quiet and peaceful Canyon Ranch property. I spent most of that time reading and making friends with birds. As one does. If you’d like a peek at what things looked like down there, you can click on the photo of the happy couple (then and now) to go to my Tucson photo page. And if your travels bring you down Southern Arizona way, I’d heartily recommend pampering yourself at Canyon Ranch. Pro tip: you can get the cookies and the ice cream for dinner desert if you ask nicely!

 

10,000 Words On A Chair (Sedona #8)

(Note: Click on any image for full-size view)

PRIOR ARTICLES IN THIS SERIES:

The Night Has 10,000 Words (Sedona #7)

10,000 Words From The Exit Wound (Sedona #6)

What Are 10,000 Words For? (Sedona #5)

10,000 Words In A Cardboard Box (Sedona #4)

10,000 Words (Bless The Lord) (Sedona #3)

Brighter Than 10,000 Words (Sedona #2)

10,000 Words (Sedona #1)

Storm Force 10,000 Words (Chicago #10)

Ship Arriving Too Late To Save 10,000 Words (Chicago #9)

Beyond the Valley of 10,000 Words (Chicago #8)

Return to the Planet of 10,000 Words (Chicago #7)

Revenge of the Son of 10,000 Words (Chicago #6)

Son of Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #5)

Yet Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #4)

Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #3)

10,000 More Words (Chicago #2)

10,000 Words (Chicago)

After A Reunion (Of Sorts)

Best travel buddy Marcia and I are home this afternoon after a five-day trip to visit with family en masse for the first time in nearly two years. We drove up to Las Vegas to see Katelin and John, with a stop to hike down to Hoover Dam on the way. We got to celebrate John’s birthday with a lovely dinner, the first one the four of us have eaten out together in a long, long time, it seemed. (All of us have been fully vaccinated, though we’re still doing our part with masks and distancing and such, it should go without saying). Then we flew on to Boise, Idaho, where my niece, Emmeline, was graduating from Boise State University, having finished her B.S. in Health Sciences there. Great jorb, Emme!

My sister (Paige), her husband (Dana), their son (Charlie), his girlfriend (Kristen), and my mother (The Notorious G.R.Z.) were also in town for the festivities. Dana’s brother (Ward), and his wife (Nova), and daughter (Lucy) live in Boise, as does Emmeline’s boyfriend (Asher), adding to the extended family fun. Ward, Nova and Lucy hosted us for a couple of nights of backyard delights, and we’re most grateful for their wonderful hospitality. Also most grateful for Lucy’s OMG BEST COOKIES EVAR!!!111!!1!!1, which she baked and generously shared with us. I’d have kept them to myself had I made them. She’s a peach. Likewise Nova, who had a rough surgery on Friday but still hostessed us the mostest in their lovely Boise home. Sending healing hugs and thanks her way.

We had the chance to visit Ward at Duft Watterson, his exceptional design and advertising agency, which was simply awash with various “Best in Show” awards for their truly unique and exciting work. As those who read me regularly know, I am a design and typeface and marketing snob, but what I saw of what they did and where/how they did it was just brilliant, an assessment borne out by the portfolio shared on their website. You need design, you call Ward and his team. Chop chop. The Duft Watterson office is in the heart of The Basque Block, so we got to have some awesome grub while we were hanging out in their ‘hood. We also paid a visit to The Basque Museum, which was very well curated and interpreted for such a small cultural/educational attraction. I recommend that site as well, heartily.

This trip was the first time we got to meet Asher and Kristen and they were great company. Emmeline and Charlie done good on the partners front. It worked out wonderfully to get to see my Mom for the first time since August 2019 and share Mother’s Day with her, and then to fly back via Vegas again, so Katelin and Marcia could have their special brunch together this morning. (I got to tag along). We drove back home via a slightly different route and did a hike from Laughlin, Nevada up to the Davis Dam. Lots of hydro infrastructure this trip. Marcia and I also got to do some fine couples hikes in Boise, where the wildflowers were in full force, making the lovely countryside even more beautiful. Good company, good times.

A fine trip, all things considered. And now it feels fine to be back home. I’ve posted an album of the adventure over at Flickr, as I normally do. You can click on either the photo of me at the 3-D exhibition at the Basque Museum (Paige took that one), or The Notorious G.R.Z. in full festive flight (not sure who snapped that one!) to see the rest of the collection.

The Night Has 10,000 Words (Sedona #7)

(Note: We’re headed up to Idaho this week to visit with my extended family for the first time in two years, and to see my niece graduate from Boise State University. I might have some snaps from that trip when I return, but until then, here’s some more local color from our Northern Arizona homeland, including a day-trip up to the Flagstaff area).

(Note: Click on any image for full-size view)

PRIOR ARTICLES IN THIS SERIES:

10,000 Words From The Exit Wound (Sedona #6)

What Are 10,000 Words For? (Sedona #5)

10,000 Words In A Cardboard Box (Sedona #4)

10,000 Words (Bless The Lord) (Sedona #3)

Brighter Than 10,000 Words (Sedona #2)

10,000 Words (Sedona #1)

Storm Force 10,000 Words (Chicago #10)

Ship Arriving Too Late To Save 10,000 Words (Chicago #9)

Beyond the Valley of 10,000 Words (Chicago #8)

Return to the Planet of 10,000 Words (Chicago #7)

Revenge of the Son of 10,000 Words (Chicago #6)

Son of Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #5)

Yet Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #4)

Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #3)

10,000 More Words (Chicago #2)

10,000 Words (Chicago)

10,000 Words From The Exit Wound (Sedona #6)

(Note: Click on any image for full-size view)

PRIOR ARTICLES IN THIS SERIES:

What Are 10,000 Words For? (Sedona #5)

10,000 Words In A Cardboard Box (Sedona #4)

10,000 Words (Bless The Lord) (Sedona #3)

Brighter Than 10,000 Words (Sedona #2)

10,000 Words (Sedona #1)

Storm Force 10,000 Words (Chicago #10)

Ship Arriving Too Late To Save 10,000 Words (Chicago #9)

Beyond the Valley of 10,000 Words (Chicago #8)

Return to the Planet of 10,000 Words (Chicago #7)

Revenge of the Son of 10,000 Words (Chicago #6)

Son of Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #5)

Yet Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #4)

Another 10,000 Words (Chicago #3)

10,000 More Words (Chicago #2)

10,000 Words (Chicago)

A Quick Trip: Northeastern Arizona

Marcia and I decided to do a little road trip this weekend, to tease ourselves a bit about the prospects of some semblance of post-COVID normality returning at some point in the year ahead. We drove up to the Northeastern part of Arizona, making stops at Meteor Crater, Homolovi State Park, and Petrified Forest National Park.

We spent a night in Winslow, Arizona (just a couple of blocks from that famous corner upon which one stands, hoping for a girl, my Lord, in a flat-bed Ford) at the lovely and historic La Posada, and had dinner in their Turquoise Room, which was wonderful. They’re taking health precautions seriously there, still, for which we are grateful. It was the first meal we have eaten indoors in a restaurant in 13 months, as best we can recall. Well-spaced tables, staff in masks, temperature checks before admission reduced the anxiety reactions to acceptable levels, and we enjoyed being reminded about why dining out can be a nice thing. Well, except for when the asshole at the table behind us decided he needed to have a shouted business conversation into his cell phone while awaiting his entree. Hell is other people, still, I guess. But not all of them, thankfully.

We came back over the mountains and enjoyed the cool pine forests at high elevations. From the summit near Payson to the point where we got back on the highway in Camp Verde, there was a 23 degree temperature differential, which we experienced in less than a 30 minute drive. We also experienced radically different geologies and biomes over the course of fairly limited drive, all things relative and considered. Arizona continues to blow my mind at the breadth of natural experiences one can have here. And we’ve still not made it to the southwestern part of the state, so we have lots more to see, and expect it to look different from anything we’ve seen to date, which has been par for the course on any trip we’ve taken here.

We’re sketching out other travel plans for later in the summer, and will report on them here, as always. I snapped away this weekend, per usual, so if you’d like to see some views, click on the image of the Blue Mesa Badlands below, deep in the heart of the Petrified Forest Park. It’s an incredible place!