Sunday, February 24, 2013

More Arizona Highways . . .

The view from our lunch bench in downtown Sedona.

Will downtown Sandpoint be seeing these soon?

All doubts of whether or not we would make it on down the road to Phoenix and tomorrow's spring training game with the Seattle Mariners-LA Angels were washed away early yesterday morning when Bill took the sick pickup to the auto doctor just down Route 66 from our motel.

The sick pickup, we quickly learned, had a bad bearing.  Bill called me at the motel, to tell me the news, the cost (turned out to be $800) and that auto doctor was amazing.  He would get right to the pickup and we might be on our way within hours.

So, I told Bill I'd take the clothes to the laundromat at a small mall next to our Best Western.  In the cold, cold air of Flagstaff, I walked with my white garbage bag full of clothes into the darkened, somewhat scuzzy facility where an earlier assessment of the place revealed at least two working washers and two working dryers.

No soap, no lights, no heat and a lot of mops and blankets strewn throughout and and draped over top loading washers, but all I cared was that some machines would wash and dry our clothes.

I also had my phone so I figured I could call 911 if any scary visitors came through the door.  None did.

By the time our whites and jeans had been just loaded into the two dryers, Bill called and said the pickup was fixed.

So, hats off to Advanced Auto, a Goodyear dealer, near Flagstaff's Super 8 on Route 66. 

If only those dryers could work as fast as that auto doctor did.  It was a bit of a wait, but finally I loaded up clothes in the white sack and made my way back to the motel.

Within minutes, we were off down the road, headed for Sedona.  

I think Bill and I are both amazed at the amount of beautiful forest land here in Arizona.  We've driven up and down a lot of steep, curvy and narrow roads and have seen as much snow as we left in North Idaho, Montana and Utah.

All beautiful, though, and all tolerable, knowing we'd eventually come out of the high country and shed our layers of clothing.

Our first taste of moderate temperature and relaxing sunshine came in beautiful Sedona.  

It's not often that Bill and I play full-fledged "turist," as he likes to call everyone else who ever shows up in a spot he thinks is reserved for us and us alone.  

Yes, we've encountered "turists" up Grouse Creek and while walking along the dikes at Bonners Ferry.  With every "turist" utterance from my husband, I ask, "Well, what about us; aren't we 'turists'?"

To which he grins.

Well, we played the role in every sense of the word in Sedona, like hundreds of others with cameras strapped around their necks, walking the sidewalks and gawking at all the beauty with surrounding red-rock mountains and high-end souvenir shops.

The folks in Sedona have done their downtown well, thinking of everything for the ultimate "turist" experience----even healthwise.

It's okay to have a heart attack while checking out the psychic reading and crystal shops cuz the handy downtown defibrillator could possibly save your life seconds.

In addition, you can make noise or music while pounding on the metal bars in the free-note harmony park.

Bill worked on his rendition of "Ode to Joy," while other "turists" just pounded out unique forms of cacophony.  Definitely a fun distraction for participants and spectators.

We also admired the beautiful sculpture of Sacajawea in a Sedona mall that bears her name. 

The aroma of barbecued ribs wafted through downtown and drew Bill to the cafe counter for a his rib sandwich and a hamburger for me.

We enjoyed the ultimate of playing "turist," just like we see in Sandpoint, by munching on our sandwiches in the sun on a downtown bench.  People watching, of course, topped off our lunch experience. 

Then, it was on the road again through Cottonwood, Prescott, Wickenburg and now to Glendale.

We made a stop to admire the sculpture of Kokopelli across the road from the beautiful Mission of the Immaculate Conception near Cottonwood. 

I'm wearing a polo shirt this morning with no sweater, and I'm figuring that will be sufficient today with temps in the high 60s.  Might be cold for the Arizonans but definitely ovenlike for us northerners.

We're meeting Jim and Laurie (former students) this morning and searching out some geocaching adventures.  

Life has turned out okay, thanks to that wonderful auto doctor who fixed our pickup back in Flagstaff, so the excellent adventure for Bill and Marianne rolls on.

As it does for the ZAGS:  27-2 and I'm betting No. 2 in the nation in tomorrow's polls.  Bill and I are pretty excited about seeing them play in Provo Thursday night.

Happy Sunday from Arizona.        


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