16 November 2009

A Visit to the Desert

Settling back into the familiar rhythms of home today and happily reflecting upon my recent excursion. My mama scooped me up and took me to see their sweet little pad in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. They've had such fun filling it with Grandma's mid-century furniture and a delightful mix of mod and local artifacts. So much fun to see what they've been up to and experience all that they love of the region.

This whole area was a swingin' place to be in the 60's and the architecture stands as a testament to it. And tons, just gobs of fabulous restaurants everywhere you turn. Some are contemporary and some are refurbished gems of decades past.

The Valley Ho was a favorite of Frank Sinatra, Dezi Arnez, and all of that finger snappin' bunch. Sa-wanky! We ate dinner in their Zuzu cafe (I had a roasted tomato and truffle fontina cheese sandwich, thank you very much!!) and giggled at all that was and is now chic once more. At a different landmark restaurant, I tried my first ever martini.

Gorgeous? Yes. Sophisticated? Of course, darling. Delicious? Cough, cough, inhale deeply ... uhh, let's just say I am not woman enough to pull off a dry martini with a twist. Yeowzers! I deeply wanted to like it, but each sip left me feeling like I had just downed a tablespoon of nail polish remover. Sigh. I will stick to the ice water with a twist.

There was also ample opportunity to peruse local markets and ... thrift shops! Oh, I do love the junky antique stores and a local thrifty joint. So much fun. So what did I find that could make it back home in my luggage?

A late 60's/early 70's "Dot & Dash" vintage necklace. I loooove it. It lays so nicely and has a beautiful clasp that almost makes you want to wear it backwards.

We also had a chance to hike part of Camelback Mountain. The weather was mild and the sky was clear. What I loved about hiking in the desert is the continual vistas! In the northwest, you don't really get a skyline view until you've reached the top. Here, everything is so open you can hike a bit, sit on a rock and take in the view. Hike a little more and sit on a rock again! Beautiful. This is a climb I'd like to do again.

My weekend adventure was a gift. I was treated royally (thank you, Mama!), traveled to a new place (which I love to do), relaxed and read a new book, and spent time just being with my Mama. She is a fine, fine example to me in more ways that I can express.

Love you, Mama.


  1. Sounds like such a lovely trip :) You and your mama are two very pretty ladies! And I love that necklace - so cute!

    And if you ever decide to try that martini again, you want it dirty - very dirty (more olive juice) that's the only way I can handle 'em. Cause I totally know what you mean about "wanting" to like it ;)

  2. Sigh... what a wonderful, wonderful birthday excursion. The professor and I visited Phoenix (and the Biltmore resort -- talk about sa-wanky!) last September and really enjoyed our stay, taking in as much local flavor as we could. My hike up Camelback one morning on my own was... unforgettable. All in all we concluded that the mod'ish desert oasis that is Phoenix is a wonderful place to visit. From the looks of things I'd say you concur!

  3. looks SO awesome! your mom is adorable, too- I hope I look that snazzy in the future.

    So glad it was fun!!! Whoo-hoo!!

  4. Looks like tons of fun!!! I'm impressed you tried a martini... I prefer iced tea with lemon... I'm a wild one!!!

  5. SO glad you had such a fun and wonderful getaway!

  6. Looks like it was a great trip! It must have been nice to escape the dreary November weather for somewhere that requires sunglasses. I'm glad you got away :)

  7. my goodness you guys are gorgeous! looks like you had SUCH a fab time. SIGH. makes me want to get away...

    next time, stick with a cosmopolitan ;-)