Jan 5, 2015 from the desert
The desert is a good place — to end one year and begin another. I realize that not everyone is attracted to this stark beauty but I feel the draw it has held for many throughout the ages – mystics, artists, eccentrics, loners, outlaws, naturalists, those who are well-grounded, and those who are not. The desert may be a bit like skydiving and riding a motorcycle – if I need to explain it to you, you wouldn’t understand.
These are some pictures of a fascinating rock arrangement someone set up out in the desert within walking distance of where we parked with other boondockers west of Yuma. Art – unannounced, unmarked, not explained. Just there. Like the cacti, the sand, the sunrise …
We also rode over to watch the dune buggies go crazy on the sand at the Imperial Sand Dunes. It looks like fun, but I’m sure all that sand would play havoc with my lungs.
But we needed to come back to Tucson for an appointment, so we drove the truck camper to town and moved back into the 40 foot motorhome parked at the Air Force Base in what they call “over-flow” – meaning there are no hookups (no electricity, water, or plumbing), but that’s Doug’s preference. He has enough solar power for half of Tucson and enormous holding tanks for the other essentials. His solar powers the coffee grinder, coffee pot, tea pot, microwave/convection, and computers, so it’s not like we’re roughing it. The RV park on base is particularly comfortable – the lots are large and the area is quiet. Not the wide open spaces of the desert, but a good compromise when you need to be in town.
Early this week, I woke to snow on the palm trees. Apparently that is as remarkable as snow in NW Florida.
We’ve begun a culinary study of chile rellenos – one that could take a long time, especially since the study requires a parallel review of margaritas.
To insure we leave few stones unturned, we went to Saguaro National Park West, having been to the sister East park several weeks ago. SNP West has more dirt roads than SNP East, but both are beautiful and worth a trip.
Today we rode up to the ski lift on top of Mount Lemmon – this ski resort is in the Arizona desert, at just over 8,000 feet, so it’s not Vale or Steam Boat Springs. But for someone from Florida, it was impressive. This was the first time I watched snowboarders – what a blast my grandkids would have!
As we drove down the mountain, we stopped at several overlooks, each with an ordinary stone retaining wall, yet there was one which is anything but ordinary! It was hard to capture with the camera something of the soul that went into the stone work, hard to catch a glimpse of this art through the lens. But what a gift that stranger left, for strangers to enjoy.