“February 2nd 2015
I’ve got some catching up to do.
Friday (Jan 30) I drove West towards Phoenix on Hwy 188 and later Hwy 88 through the Apache Trail. I stopped at Tonto National Monument (map / wiki) on the way. The monument protects ruins of a group of Native Americans who had lived there from around 1200 to 1400 AD.
It was cool to see their style of construction and space layout. My sister, who is on her way to becoming a licensed architect, would have found it interesting.
The Apache Trail (wiki) is a 22 mile dirt road which follows part of Apache Lake before splitting off in a southwest direction. It rained most of the day so the tops of the canyon were obscured.
That turned out to be an alright trade-off, because the storm brought the normally dry waterfalls to life.
When I made it to Phoenix I met up with my Grandfathers friend, Donna. She was incredibly hospitable and welcoming. The first thing we did was hop in her car and head to Scottsdale for a family get together.
It was about 15 of her extended family, and after sloppy joes I struck up conversation with the homeowner, a man named Don. He was an outstanding story teller. Listening to him describe the life of his late neighbor was like unknowingly participating in an orchestra performance he was conducting. He’d tell you just enough to get you thinking, and then pause. He’d bring his black & mild cigar up to his lips, make eye contact, and raise his bushy white eyebrows up as he inhaled. I can say with less sarcasm than you think – he was a master of his art.
I cant remember enough of his sayings or mannerisms, but I do remember when I asked what breed his dog, Bob, was, he replied,
Oh.. uh.. Bob there is Mr. Heinz’s 57 ingredients of mutt
I think that one will stick with me.”