Saturday morning, Hubby and I loaded into his SUV these things: our suitcase, our weekend reading, a bag of snacks, a jug of water in case of a car breakdown, and a large dog named Baxter whom we’d never met before. And thus, we began our three-hour journey to my sister’s cabin situated high on Mt. Lemmon, NE of Tucson.
Let me explain the dog: Baxter is a lovely mixed beast, part Lab and part German Shorthair. Aside from being in desperate need of a bath, one couldn’t have asked for a nicer dog to travel with. My sister had agreed to dog sit for a friend who lives near us. It was easy for us to transport Baxter south to his ward for the week while his owner was on a vacation. He was nervous in the car, so I sang a favorite song to him, which made his tail wag. When we stopped in Summerhaven for a restorative coffee and cookie, people admired him and asked about his breed. We had no answers, replying with a shrug, “He’s not our dog.” We got giggling remembering a favorite similar scene from a Pink Panther movie.
Getting to Peg and Dean’s cabin is not for the faint hearted: Their’s is the second highest on the mountain (elevation 8200) and is accessed by a series of rocky, hairpin, unpaved, steep roads. Each time we visit I’m terrified on the journey up the mountain, certain we’ll end up in a flipped car with our lives flashing before our eyes. This did not happen. We arrived safe and sound to good food, interesting conversations, and I can quite safely say I made a few new friends (Baxter promises to write, lol). We took several long walks through the woods, spotting fluffy squirrels, soaring hawks, and picking up all sorts of unusual rocks. I’m currently in the process of trying to identify the minerals so I can share them properly with my students. I’m also very curious about the swarm of small black butterflies which flitted about us at a look-out point on our ascent. I can’t find any info on them online, but am eager to identify them. I have to say after a weekend with highs in the 70’s, it’s hard to return to 110 degrees at home.
In other news:
William has settled in well to his college apartment near NAU. He is very happy with several of his professors, something I never heard from his older siblings during their college careers. This is a good thing! He is catching the bus outside his apartment and has a 20-minute-ride to the “science side” of campus. William is excited be studying Organic Chemistry, Physics, and is taking a biology class called Unity of Life II: Lives of Multicellular Organisms. While I have a natural curiosity about my environment, I will say he’s definitely his father’s son in that he is eager to study these sciences and learn very comprehensively about how things work. Go, William!
This afternoon, Hubby and I went refrigerator shopping. The one we bought in 2004 has an ice maker problem that created a glacier in the entire upper half of the freezer. After chipping at the glacier with a small red-handled pick for weeks, we decided it was time to replace the dang thing. The plastic is cracked throughout, and the door seals are worn. I feel comfortable with the number of years we used it before replacing it (don’t you hate sending things to the landfill?). We set off to Home Depot resigned to stainless steel even thought I really hate it, and it doesn’t match anything else in my kitchen. I like soft warm colors, like bisque. (Hubby teased me they probably didn’t have appliances in avocado or harvest gold either.) But can you believe our luck, that after choosing a fridge, we discovered it was $100 cheaper in BISQUE! We were so excited that Hubby and I high-fived, shouting “Bisque! They said it couldn’t be done!” (I am no longer bothered by what folks think, one of the advantages of being the advanced age of 53.) The young Home Depot clerk did not appear to share in our joy, but I’m excited about our new fridge, which arrives next week.
This Friday past marked the end of my third week back to school. Our students are delightful and give us so many smiles throughout the day. They are like little sponges, eager to learn about anything and everything! This job is so rewarding but is a definitely overstimulating and physical . . . and at this point is still kicking my ass. I need to get more sleep; I’m like a child at bedtime: “I don’t wanna go to bed! I wanna watch more tv!” I’ve never been good at transitions but am tired of, well, being tired. I have new bedtime goals, as well as new “remember to take your vitamins” goals— and am excited to get back to work tomorrow. I hope all of you had a lovely Labor Day weekend!