Laughter is Good Medicine

I woke up this morning in Phoenix, or, should I say Mesa, at my aunts house. It was already pretty warm outside at 7:30 so I took Myra on a short potty walk.
I may have to stay around here a little longer as I have been completely spoiled. Check out this breakfast of champions!

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Sliced strawberries and pineapple with whip cream on top (it has to have dairy to be a well balance meal right?).  We stayed out on the front porch and enjoyed the warmth and slight breeze, as we talked for several hours about life and all that entails.  About 11:30 we decided that Mexican food sounded really good, and so we got all put together and headed for lunch on the town.

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I was keeping an eye on my watch, as I was scheduled to pick up a friend at the airport at 2:30.  Towards the end of lunch the minute hand was moving closer and closer to 2:00pm.  I was thinking we were pushing it as it was going to take 20+ minutes to get to the airport from my aunts house.  We payed and quickly got out to the car and on our way.  A few stoplights into our return drive from the restaurant Aunt Heidi says, “you know it’s only one here right?”.  I had forgotten about the time change between Farmington and Mesa.  I didn’t have to rush, I didn’t have to sweat it.
We got back to her place and I refilled the water bottles and packed the car.  We talked a bit more about drawing and art, and before too long, it was time to say goodbye.
The directions to the airport were very straightforward, so with the address plugged into the GPS, off I went. As an Idaho farm girl raised at least an hour away from the nearest freeway, you would think Phoenix traffic would be a bit intimidating, but this GPS thing makes me feel like I have a super power.  Well, today it wasn’t quite as helpful as usual. As I sat in the front parking lot at the address given me looking for my friend and talking on the phone we realized that I was not at the same building she was at.  I drove in a few circles, and about three U-turns later found her on the other side of the street in a rental car return maze that could have only been dreamed up by airline staff out to have a good time at my expense.  All dressed up cute in her business clothes Mary Beth was ready to kick off her heels and head out of town.  It was now three and the traffic was starting to slow, and we just wanted to get out of town before true rush hour hit.
We had discussed the “plan” and changed it a few times before we decided to head towards Tuzigoot, so we could take the scenic route to our Sedona destination.  About 11 miles out of Verde Valley we saw a sign for Agua Fria National Monument.  I kind of have a personal goal to see all of the national monuments and so I couldn’t exactly pass this one up.

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This sign was almost immediately off the freeway off ramp, and was accompanied by a rather washboard looking dirt road.  Thinking there must be a visitors center just up the road a ways, we headed on.  Now, I haven’t done a lot of dirt road or gravel road driving in a while, and found myself going much too fast.  After a sharp turn/ loose gravel combination that made our lives flash before our eyes, we decided on a slower pace.  Maybe 5 miles into our gravel road we turned around because there was no sign of a visitors center and I had less than a quarter tank of gas.  Being stranded in the desert on a gravel road in the heat of the summer seemed like a scenario to avoid at all costs.  It was very beautiful though, and I promised myself I would look up more on the significance of the park later on.

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The drive into Sedona was as beautiful, just as it was last time, and I enjoyed getting to share this jewel with a friend.

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We found our hotel and then quickly headed back out to explore.

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It got dark quickly, so we returned to the hotel, took Myra for a walk, found a cool bug, and then it was time to crash. Looking forward to a few more days of laughter.  Thank you Aunt Heidi for being such a wonderful host, and Thank you Mary Beth.  I may have laughed to the point of tears a few times today, and like you would say, “it is good for the soul.”
Love you guys!

Categories: Friends, national monument, Road Trip, Travel | Leave a comment

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