Sunday, May 24, 2009

Out of My Element

I've haven't posted in a while because I've been out of town. This weekend I am at the ABAI National Conference, in Phoenix, AZ. I flew in Friday morning, and will return to St. Louis Tuesday night (though technically it will be Wednesday by the time I get home).

I got off the plane and heard, "Welcome to Sunny Arizona," and spent the next two days looking at this:
"Sunny Arizona," my patootie! Just when I was beginning to think that the "sunny" thing was just a massive conspiracy spearheaded by the Arizona Tourism Board, the sun did come out. And it warmed right up. And it's true that the dry heat feels much better than the 90% humidity we have back home.

I've had some opportunities to do some sight seeing in the afternoons, after my workshops. I am fascinated by the strange vegetation and wildlife they have here.

They have purple cacti:
(By the way, Blogland, meet Wilbur. Wilbur is my traveling companion for this trip. He goes everywhere I go, and he really enjoys being photographed.)

They also have other pretty plants. Lots of stuff is either blooming or getting ready to bloom right now. This tree really impressed me. It's a Teddy Bear Cholla. From the road it looks fluffy, but up close... not so much. It blooms with these beautiful flowers that are surrounded by big, pointy, menacing looking spikes.
On the way home today we saw some people crossing the road on horses. (We also saw several coyotes walking down the side of the road, but I couldn't get the camera out & on before they disappeared into the desert.)
And then my mom (whom I'm staying with) drove the scenic route home. We saw the Elvis Chapel...
...and a bunch of mountains. This one is south of Gold Canyon (where she lives):
This is the Superstition Mountain:
I have a lot more pictures... mostly of big, majestic mountains and big, blue sky.

Speaking of things that are big, my mom picked these out of her garden today:
It's hard to tell, but the tomatoes are hugemongous (think bowling ball), and the squash is ginormous (think caveman club).
I'm sure I'll post some more photos later this week, too. There are some interesting pieces of art all around the Convention Center, and a few others from around the house.

I hope you all are having a safe, relaxing holiday weekend.


Mary... said...

I'm glad you are having fun in the southwest! I'm looking forward to more photos and some great info from the conference. :)

Anonymous said...

nice trip!
sounds like it was fun... love the desert.

IndigoMuse said...

So glad that you got to spend sometime away. A break is always nice.

BTW, your spinning and gardening look FAB!!!