Friday, February 22, 2008

"Adventure Well Underway"

(from handwritten entry...)
We have arrived in Tucson! I picked Julia up from work and off we went east on I-8. At the first rest area, Julia took over driving. I was to change with her on the next stop. There was a rest area only twenty one miles further, but we didn't need that one. However for nearly 200 miles, I never saw another rest area. So Julia drove the entire rest of the way in. Fortunately we found a nice classical station WBAG which played pleasant selections. But the constant 'A" line of the highway lines had an hypnotic effect and I drifted off to sleep.

I had a dream in which I was in a airplane, forever taxi-ing. I was thinking, "Shouldn't this plane be air borne by now?" There's always a thrilling feeling when it finally gets aloft, which hasn't dulled with repetition.

I woke up in time to help Julia navigate in the city. Most of the highway exits were closed, except for Prince-254, a familiar exist. Laura and I always used it to enter Tucson. However, all the new buildings, including a MALL(!), certainly weren't familiar. A lot of changes have happend to this town between our last visit in November 2001 and now. I really shouldn't be surprised, for Yuma has undergone a proportionate number of changes, relative to its size. (For instance, our huge new mall would surprise one who hadn't visited in a while.)

So as we headed down Prince, I noted what was familiar, nestled within all the new. Fortunately I remembered in time that to access Grant, I'd best turn on Oracle, for Grant is parallel to Prince!

The hotel seems decent, it has a breakfast restaurant, our adventure is well underway!

Saturday, February 23, 2008 A

"Embrace This New..."

I wake with many thoughts, so I leave the wide bed and the warm snoring Julia to go to the bathroom. Its cold floor is varigated brown (saltilo?), it seems a stone substance, even eight inch squares held in a grid of one inch wide cement. Sturdy, not elegant marble, but sturdy, and I wish our floor at home was such.

As I laid in bed, before the urge to record my thoughts propelled me outward, I thought of the concept of 'Home'. For a long time I've held in memory a concept of Tucson as 'home'. During those discontented days in Casa Grande, I'd long for Tucson. Even during our contented days in Yuma, I've held this memory as an alternative 'home'. But that is just a memory. Were Laura to see this Tucson now, she would be as surprised as I am now. (And yes, were Laura to see Yuma as it is now, she would be surprised.)

Change is a constant of life. We don't always like it, but embracing it leads to a happier life. In communities of place and communities held together by invisible psychic bonds across the miles, change happens. Some familiar pillars depart and new ones arrive. But we are forever touched by their presence for ever how long or short our exchanges were.

I wait in the early morning darkness, ready to embrace this new Tucson, as she is, and leave to my memory the old one.


Snap of Julia still sleeping, she woke up soon after...

Snap of room. Note rounded edge on counter. I was grateful for that round edge during nighttime bathroom excursions!

Saturday, February 23, 2008 B

"The Zoo, the Art, the Photos"

We sat on a bench in the Center for Creative Photography and pondered. It was 3:38pm. Could we make it to the museum on Main Street? They were open until 5:00pm. But I felt so weary. Julia, who is always amenable, didn't mind when I suggested the hotel room seemed quite inviting.

I got ice water, plopped and felt the urge to draw:

Then I remembered all I'd seen...

The Zoo...

The Art... (This piece by Jacques Lipchitz)

Art from the University of Arizona Art Museum, SAMUEL H. KRESS COLLECTION
photo ©Joan Ann Lansberry, February, 2008

Sunday, February 24, 2008

"What an Adventure..."

I wake early with thoughts and hunger. Oh, how delicious was that apple I'd saved from Friday's lunch!

We went to bed uncharacteristically early at 7:30pm, due to exhaustion. We'd walked SO much...

But rest and sleep and apples help to cure exhaustion...

I picked today's itinerary after studying one of the booklets provided by the hotel. There is a Botanical Garden just north on the road the hotel sits on. (I cannot get lost!) And a sushi restaurant is just south on the road the hotel sits on (Alvernon). But truly, even if I were to get lost, I can get directions. (I am too much like a guy), but Julia encouraged me to aske the gas station attendent for directions yesterday. Not only did he tell me how to find Speedway street, he knew the restaurant I was trying to find, Fronimos. (Oh, the spanakopita and the delicious lemon, egg and rice soup!)

(Scene from restaurant - "Almost griffins" facing each other)

What an adventure this has been!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

"Heating Up"

Yesterday was a warm day, reaching 85°F (29°C). I was hot at work, sleeves rolled up, stiff collar bothering me. Today, I've selected a soft silk shirt, short sleeved of course, as the temps are predicted to reach 83°F. It brings reminder of the horrible heat to come. I'm so glad we had that lovely weekend out in the zoo and in the garden when the weather was partly cloudy and cool.

Pond at Reid Park zoo...

An inviting bench encourages you to relax at the botanical garden

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