Wednesday, April 20, 2005


Life on a Desert Island?

Okay, Phoenix isn't an island, and it wasn't a life-long trip, but the past extended weekend in Tempe/Phoenix/Scottsdale/Sedona was lovely. The waterpolo... not so lovely.

32 degreeC weather, combined with 88 degreeF pool water = me hugging an ice pack whenever I was out of the water, to try to drop my body temperature. (why I know air temps in Celcius and pool water in Farenheit is another day, another post..) The games themselves were also pretty ugly, the team lacking a bit in cohesiveness (my friend Wolf and I being two of four "imports" for the tourney didn't help), somewhat in game skills and communication skills, and then all of us being sapped of energy by the water temperature. Ah well... got a cool shirt :)

Highlights of the trip:
Desert Botanical Garden, where you really don't want to stumble off the paths, had a billion little and big prickly things, plus quail and ground squirrels (look like mini prarie dogs) and lizards and loud birds and butterflies (but not the butterfly pavilion, cause the lineup was an hour long...)

Sedona's art and craft center (starts with a T, native word that I can't remember) with a ton of very high-end galleries, among them a place with a fair number of kalaidoscopes (REALLY took a lot of effort not to buy one for $65USD... so cool, bright colours, good crisp mirror angles, and a black background to the image... birthday present, anyone? ) and the most amazing collection of outdoor art: a boy and his dragon (picture posted when I get them from Wolf), a fountain of pigs called Hogwash, and at least 50 wind sculptures whirling around slowly in the breeze... ooooohh...... I was standing there, HUGE smile on my face, prob looking like a 5-year-old at Christmastime.. I'll be sending some design ideas to sister Heather, once I actually have LAND to put a wind sculpture on.

Slide Rock State Park, just north of Sedona, had a river flowing through red rock that had been worn smooth, with some undercut areas that made it entertaining to try to walk beside the water up away from the crowds, ducking around overhands and such, playing lizard on rock ledges, and then trying out the Slide: get into the river (BBRRRRRRRR! 55degreesF), sit in the rush of water where it has hollowed out a little seat, then let go and the current whisks you through essentially a natural waterslide.. sideways, up and over, around... then dumping you into a slower, deeper channel that you can climb out of. Way cool. And, cold... having been complaining of the heat all weekend, after a couple turns down the slide, I actually spent the next three hours wearing a cardigan and shivering.. but with a huge grin on my face (Wolf was a wuss, didn't try it.. but I've got video of me!)

Hm.... Tempe itself was alright.... good food all weekend, Greek, Mexican ("President George Bush ate here!" -ugh), hand-mixed icecream... nice people, art EVERYWHERE (mosaic tiles by sidewalks, underpasses and highway channels with giant murals or designs pressed into the concrete, statues..) bright sunny weather.. but this is their Spring. Can't imagine the heat in summer, when we were getting overheated in just April.

Flight on the way back got cancelled, so our reschedule took us into Portland (good scenery, good airport art, nice folks working there) and into a little prop plane for the hop over to Seattle, eeeeek! I don't mind flying.. except the taking off, landing, and turbulence inbetween :)

Back home, I got in the door and was meowed. Extensively. Repeatedly. With Feeling. Apparently the lovely Phoenix the cat didn't appreciate being left behind (I'm SURE that's what she was trying to tell me..).. but she's almost over it now.

Weather: bright, clear, sunny.
Chai's so far: two, though three visits to Starbucks today.
Craft in progress: coral pink knitted top, going surprisingly well, but I need to make a decision about what happens from the armpits up, and soon!
Wardrobe: denim panel skirt, black scoopneck tank, new strapless that is doing a lovely job of holding the girls up, but in the process is digging lines into my back, and comfy worn-down flipflops.
Music: Today, nothing. All weekend, Latino hiphop and RnB.. not bad, except for the really nasty remake of "Happy Together" that someone has done.

Water: One bath, two swims in the ODP including a very long, leisurely excuse to sunbathe this afternoon, and a fairly short-yet-tiring polo practice an hour ago.... pool chemistry seems off, though, cause I itch!

Wow.. its been a long time since I posted!.. guess the empty pool doesn't actually mean I was working less!

Gosh, I've missed you! Too bad we haven't developed *real* personal climate control yet (not like the goofy back-of-the-neck water sprayer, more like an electronic implant that adjusts your core temp) - glad to hear the heat didn't sap all the joy out of the trip, though. How'd your waiting-to-emplane time go? Parking lot? Roadside pullout? Drive straight through? Tell all - and don't wait for *land* to send me design ideas, dammit!
The waiting thing was actually the worst part of the trip.. Thursday night, Wolf couldn't commit to when he'd be ready to leave, so I was ready... and waiting... and waiting.. and waiting... and then I dropped my phone in the bathtub so it stopped working, so I had to get dressed and go out to a payphone and let him know that my phone didn't work.. at that point he said "okay, in an hour, I'll come over, we sleep for three and then go."... and instead he showed up 20 minutes before we had to go, so I'd been slepeing poorly waiting for him to show up. Ah well. Bitched about it, and let it go, and had an otherwise fabulous time.
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