Sunday, December 13, 2009

Lighting the Luminarias in Tubac

Tubac, AZ is an artist colony 40 or so miles south of Tucson, and on Friday evening they had a shindig -- the traditional lighting of the luminarias. [For the uninitiated, a luminaria nowadays is a small lantern, usually created from a paper sack, some sand and a candle. In olden days, a luminaria was a bonfire used to light up the common area for a Christmas season
celebration, and a farolito was a small lantern -- but the terminology has been abused and misused for so many years that it has now become institutionalized.]

There were two things to see at Friday's celebration -- some of the art works of the residents of Tubac, and some of the decorative lighting of the area. The pictures below show some of each.
The one unusual find of the evening is the work done on the table and the bowls -- the natural cracks in the wood were lightly routed, then filled with a paste of ground turquoise and glue, then sanded off to a smooth surface and sealed.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Our Tucson Abode

We had made an agreement to rent this place sight unseen, simply relying on some info from Leah (our landlady) and our perception of her good heartedness. I knew we had found the right place when I saw the little sign on the front corner of the unit . . .

There are just shy of 1700 places such as ours in Tucson Estates filled with folks from all over the U.S. There are clubs of almost all types here -- Clara has already been to one session of "Stitch-and-Chatter" and will add to that next week by going to the Piece Makers Quilt club.

Note the Southwestern flora showing in the third picture -- the saguaro cactus to the right, the prickly pear cactus a little back from there, the palo verde tree on the back left.

Viewing Sandhill Cranes

On Friday (after Thanksgiving) we went over to Whitewater Draw to see the thousands of Sandhill Cranes that congregate there in the wintertime – a really spectacular show. As we stood there watching and listening, some idiot back behind us fired off a gunshot – what a scene, as the thousands took flight.

I'm having a little fun with this first picture – first there's the picture as it came from the camera, then I've cropped out a small section from the middle in order to get a better look at the cranes, then a still smaller section for an even better look.

Thanksgiving in Sierra Vista, AZ

We came to Sierra Vista, AZ at the invitation of our Las Vegas friends (Jerry and Linda) to spend Thanksgiving with them at Linda's Aunt Isabel's home (although the big T-day dinner was at another home.) And it was all very nice, although perhaps the best part was the show that late afternoon from the back patio. The really spectacular part of dinner was the artfully crafted pies – note the individual leaves on the crust on the rim; the show from the back patio was all natural. 'Nuff said . . . look at the pictures.

The New (Un-)bespectacled Me

After 67 years of reaching for my glasses first thing in the morning,
and wearing them non-stop all day long, I am struggling to adapt to
NOT wearing glasses, except to read.

When I recently went to my opthalmologist, I complained of having
increasing difficulty seeing clearly, especially at short to mid
range. His tech carefully checked for a possible new prescription
for glasses, and reported that the numbers that came up were EXACTLY
the same as my current prescription.

The opthalmologist opined that the only possible improvement MIGHT
come from getting so-called "RGP's," i.e., rigid gas permeable
contact lenses because my problem, so he said, was the surface
irregularities caused from my corneal transplant.

So I got them (well, only one -- for my good right eye) and a miracle
occurred! With that one lens in place, I now see better than I have
for fifteen years. But it's very difficult to walk out of the house,
get in the car and drive away -- without my glasses!

Leaving Seattle In The Rain

The official title of this chapter of the travels of Glenn and Clara is
"Leaving Seattle In The Rain, Passing Through Oregon (I think . . . )
In The Fog, Arriving In The Southwest In The Sunshine."
Beyond the title, we'll let the pictures speak for themselves! I am
including the last picture especially for the Seattleites who may by
now have forgotten what blue sky looks like . . .

We left on Sunday, the 22nd, and arrived at our Thanksgiving
rendezvous in Arizona yesterday late afternoon.