TOUR OF THE SIERRA NEVADAS, DAY 11
September 15, 2017
MY HEART FLUTTERS FOR JOY UPON REENTERING ARIZONA
Confederate flags okay in Kingman
When we crossed the border between Nevada and Arizona after driving over the Hoover Dam, my heart fluttered for joy.
“We are home again,” I said to Elizabeth. “And my heart knows it.”
I then told her about the same warm feeling in my heart when I returned to Arizona 16 years ago, in September 2011, after cruising through 10 western states right after 9/11 (see http://yinyangbob.com/Photos/tristate/photo_index.html).
The purpose of that 2001 trip was to find a possible new home for me. But once I felt that warmth in my heart that only a homecoming can generate, I knew I was here to stay. Sixteen years later, my heart once again confirmed that was the right decision.
Once we got to Kingman, AZ, just before we turned east on the I-40, I snapped this shot of the confederate flags fluttering in the wind. The political correctness from the eastern US has evidently not yet reached Arizona. Thank God for that. Hope it never does.
HIKING IN WALNUT CANYON TO 900-YR OLD CLIFF DWELLINGS
During our drive on the I-40 toward Flagstaff, Elizabeth suggested we make a side excursion to the Walnut Canyon. She remembered visiting there 17-18 years ago the ancient Indian cliff dwellings from the 12th century.
It was a great idea and a fun detour on our route to Sedona, our final destination for tonight. Even though Arizona has been my home for three and half decades, I had never been there before.
Walnut Canyon is actually a National Park, some 14 miles east of Flagstaff. To be able to see and enter some of these ancient Indian dwellings, one had to hike about a mile down into the canyon with an elevation difference of 185 ft – at the elevation of about 6,700 ft.
After all the up and down drives we during during this tour of the Sierra Nevadas, which took us from 3,000 ft to 10,000 ft altitudes dozens of times, and every elevation in between, doing this hike was a cinch. Elizabeth, who has had trouble with high elevations, had good reasons to be proud of herself.
SEDONA PIZZA DINNER, COWBOY HAT
There is only place in the world where Elizabeth and I eat pizza anymore. It is at the Oak Creek Brewery in Sedona. No, it’s not about the brew. We don’t drink alcohol. It’s only about the best pizza we have ever tasted.
Usually, we go on one of Sedona’s many beautiful hikes beforehand, so as to justify the extra calories and gluten. Today, we did our hike at the Walnut Canyon. And tomorrow we will do another hike in Sedona before we head down the hill back home to Scottsdale.
After such a delicious dinner, we also usually go for a walk window-shopping in the “upper Sedona” (Hwy 89A). Today, however, I hit a jackpot. First, I got some wonderful incense at my favorite Tibetan shop. Second, thanks to Elizabeth’s sharp eye, I unexpectedly bought a great cowboy hat.
Its best features are that it looks old and well worn, and, unlike the regular Stetsons, you can actually shape it to your liking. I actually bought a hat like that two years ago in Santa Fe (the pink shirt photo), but had given it as a gift to someone in Scottsdale who was enamored of it.
So on this trip, I have been looking for one like that from Jackson, WY to Tahoe, CA – without success. And then, when I least expected it, right back here in Arizona, I found it in a shop which Elizabeth had first spied.
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