Thursday, November 06, 2008

Meditations in the Desert

Tom and I took a few days out of our busy family life to get away. We have an aunt and uncle in the Phoenix area who mean the world to us and we hadn't seen them in ages. It was time to just do it!

Uncle Floyd and Tom talked non-stop about everything under the sun! So much catching up to do. My uncle is one of my heros.

When we wanted a tour of the neighborhood Aunt Joyce energetically backed out the golf cart for us to use. This lady has been a role model of graceful enthusiasm to me for decades.

While not quite ready for a 55+ neighborhood, Tom did enjoy putting around in the cart. He gave me a good ride - and didn't roll the thing! Looks pretty good in the driver's seat, no? Not as good as Aunt Joyce, but hey, she's had more practice.

Tom and I explored the Superstition Mountain area one day. It really is mysterious, rugged, and beautiful. Quite a history there!

Saguaro cacti everywhere caught my attention. Tourist that I was, I stared and stared and commented on how huge some of them are and how plentiful. Forests of them!

Does he dare? (It's Tom. Of course he dared!)

Checking into our Grand Canyon lodgings we were greeted by a trio of deer. This one stood still long enough for me to fumble around, grab my camera from my purse, and capture her curious, brown-eyed face. Made me smile.

We pulled up to the Grand Canyon at sunset and, though stressed from the situation at home, managed to snap a few photos of the magical moment.

In early morning darkness we were the first people at the rim to await the sunrise. From all over the globe people joined us, soft whispers anticipating the magical moment. At last, in muted silence we witnessed the sun's rays shoot and spread above the silhouetted rim-edge, coloring gullies and crevasses, peaks and strata with glimmering fingers of light. Not a sudden happening, but a lingering, seemingly decisive artistry that left us breathless - and renewed. It was going to be a good day, this we knew.

Statue in one of Sedona's public areas. The little picture-taking girl is part of the artwork. Delightful.

Prickly pear cactus with ruby red blossoms. We bought a jar of jelly from such red orbs and managed to bring it home in one piece. It will appear on the Thanksgiving table this year.

Chapel of the Holy Cross. Locally known as the Chapel in the Rocks, this special place seems to have grown right out of the red rocks of Sedona.

View from a pew. The serenity in this little chapel - candles, soft music, quiet contemplation, majestic view - was the perfect thing for frazzled nerves.

Natural beauty. Family ties re-secured. More than scenery. More than safety. More than vacating the routine.

Meditations in the desert paused our souls long enough to reveal the solid foundations that uphold our very lives.

Necessary moments.


Anonymous said...

What fun to see the pictures on the web. Feel like a celebrity. So pleased you liked the church. We felt it was a 'special place'. COME BACK SOON!!! Love, Aunt Joyce

Cherie said...

You'll always be a celebrity to me, AJ! And WE WILL!!!

cecily said...

Cherie... this looks amazing. So glad you had such a nice time. I love exploring places and getting into their history!

deanna said...

Thanks for the pictures - love those cacti, the deer, and of course the Canyon (haven't been there, yet). Hope next time will be as much fun with less stress!

Cherie said...

Cecily, it really is amazing. I, too, love exploring and learning the history of places. Thanks!

Deanna, Thankfully the stress was only in the last hours. Most of the trip was stress-free, and we needed it. Happy you like the photos!

Sandy's Notes said...

I hope your dog is feeling better, what a horrible thing to happen. Thank goodness the girls didn't get hurt too, sometimes breaking up a dog fight can mean more problems.

The grand canyon picture is so beautiful. I would love to see that part of the country.

Cherie said...

Sandy, thankfully Tom and I have always told the girls not to get in the middle of a dog fight and they remembered when it was needed.

Sam is 100% again and the girls - except for being jumpy when they see large dogs - are okay, too. Whew. Thanks for your concern. Means a lot.

I hope you do get to see the southwest someday. It's different and beautiful. Me? I want to get out your way.