Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Surprise, Arizona

"Change is the constant, the signal for rebirth: the egg of the phoenix." ~Christina Baldwin

June 18: Got caught in a bit of afternoon traffic in Phoenix. In my opinion, the early rush-hour seemed more chaotic (and therefore worse) than Los Angeles. The temperature was a nerve-frying 113 degrees. Ventured to Surprise, Arizona, the farthest West and North suburb of Phoenix, to visit my Aunt Karen and Uncle Bill. Their daughter, my cousin Megan, lives nearby and joined us.

It was a nice chance to relax in a pleasant air-conditioned environment, look at the family photos on the walls, and do my laundry. (Maybe an extensive road trip would make a good reality show, because you have the reality of dirt and sweat all the time.) Uncle Bill grilled some good Wisconsin bratwurst, and after dinner Megan and I played three rounds of "Cathedral," one of my favorite games. A real shower and a real bed, and I slept great.

The next morning we went out for breakfast and I got a tour of the planned community section of Surprise. I was happy to see that the citizens are encouraged (perhaps required) to plant native desert shrubs and plants. Instead of green lawns, everyone has nicely sculpted gravel and rock beds out front. Very sensible folks, if you call living in a hot-as-heck desert sensible!

After updating my blog, I was off to Prescott, Arizona.

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