Saturday, June 11, 2011
Day 10-11-12. June 10-11-12, 2011-Flagstaff, Arizona
Here I am smiling stiffly in front of the walk-in clinic in Flagstaff, Arizona–
tired and experiencing a hot, blotchy red face, and eye strain. The doctor said it’s a reaction to stress, the strong sun and driving so long each day.
So, I'm slowing down. I’ve decided to spend three days here at 7,000 feet elevation in cool but sunny Flagstaff, Arizona relaxing with my dear friend, and textile artist Julia Triebes, her husband Greg and their son Andrew. I’m standing with them in their front yard with Agassiz mountain in the distance.
Friday I drove through the deserts of New Mexico putting ice cubes under my ball cap, blowing the AC in my face and driving with the sun visors down, my face and arms plastered in sun block. I watched the landscape change from dry hills to red striped mesas popping out of the ground like ships on a sagebrush sea.
I crossed the Continental Divide, passed near the ancient Indian celestial kivas at Chaco Canyon, and saw a couple of small wildfires by the roadside near Grants, New Mexico that no one was paying any attention to. It was a long drive from Santa Fe to Flagstaff, made even longer by another time change. Arizona does not do daylight savings time. That explained why the GPS said I could drive 200+ miles and arrive by 5 pm–A feat of two hours.
Welcome to Arizona! What a treat to arrive at the Triebes house and discover that I would be staying in their RV parked next to the house. I have my own private easy-living apartment...bed, toilet, sink, tub, shower, kitchen table, couch and plenty of storage.
Inside Julia surprised me with a goodie bag filled with sweets, three varieties of Starbuck’s Via instant coffee, and an article on hand art. I felt my stiff driving neck relax at once.
Miss Etta runs free in the fenced yard at dawn, chasing birds and the neighbor's horses.
Today, on my final day of rest I returned Darcy Falk's gloves to Julia, since Darcy is not in Flagstaff this weekend. The gloves depict tarot-style Loteria icons used in Mexican bingo. Each symbol relates to an Iraq news story during Darcy's week in March, 2007. I am standing with Julia's son Andrew in her studio, in front of some of her textile art.