Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Stupas, Massages and Falling in Love

After breakfast at The Coffee Pot we visited the Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park, this is in the heart of Sedona and a lovely place to wander and wonder.

There were peace flags throughout the park.

Not only beautiful this is also a sacred place.

Could we wish for More?

We headed to a Sedona Spa where Rachel had us scheduled for luxury pedicures and a sweat lodge massage.  It was my first massage and I was a bit apprehensive but Rachel put me at ease and went first.

The massage was wonderful, just when the heat was almost unbearable they put ice cold wraps on my face.  It was a really unique experience.   I never would have booked it but so glad Rachel did!

We then headed to one of my new favorite places, Jerome.  We had lunch at the Haunted Hamburger.

Rachel enjoying an adult beverage at the Haunted Hamburger.
Do not ask, I do not have a clue what this represents.
Rachel in front of a smelter.  Jerome was a mining town that collapsed economically when the mine closed.  Believe it or not it was saved when the hippies discovered it and moved in.
This describes Jerome beautifully.

The old elementary school was turned into art studios and galleries.   We met Robin Anderson who demonstrated etching on metal.

Sunday, October 2, 2016


After the tour of Canyon de Chelly, we drove to Monument Valley.  Rachel and Alan were married here many moons ago and it has always been a special place for them.  I totally get it now, beautiful views from every angle.

This is my favorite of all the rock formations, the Three Sisters.  Rachel got this amazing picture as the sun set.

Saying hello to this friendly Mohair goat and trying unsuccessfully to entice the Churro sheep over.

Churro sheep

Making friends

The sun was setting and the valley turned golden
We stopped in Tuba City for a Navajo taco for dinner before driving back to Sedona for the night.

Remarkable Red Rocks

I have put off blogging about my trip to Arizona because it is hard to describe in a way that captures the magic of it.  Due to life circumstances, I almost postponed it.  But Rachel Porter here after referred to DD for dear daughter persisted and the trip went on as scheduled.  I am so glad!

We flew out of RDU and arrived in Arizona at night, the landscape hidden by the darkness.  The next morning, DD opened the curtains of our room at Sky Ranch Lodge in Sedona.

I was speechless, we enjoyed our coffee on the terrace and I said "amazing" an embarrassing number of times.

After a big breakfast we headed out to explore.  First up a hike at Coconino National Forest, Red Rock Pass.  We were able to experience the Boynton Canyon vortex and more stunning views.

There are many theories about the vortex and their impact on the human spirit.  Rather than the supernatural or transdimensional portal explanations  I believe it is the beauty and meditational qualities of the surroundings that inspired us.
Of course for me it could have been the exertion from the hike and a lack of oxygen that made me feel euphoric.

One of the reasons I was so excited for this trip was the opportunity to learn more about the Navajo, their culture and especially their weaving traditions.
On the way to Canyon de Chelly, we stopped at Hubbell Trading Post.  Traveling through the Reservation I was amazed at the incredible wide open spaces.  It seemed as if the road went on forever.

A traditional Navajo tapestry loom

Checking out a Navajo spindle

Mighty Churro

Rachel had arranged for us to take a jeep tour of Canyon de Chelly.  We had a wonderful guide, David.  The canyon was amazing and David told us stories about growing up in the canyon.

David and Rachel

Rachel and the wild ponies

A painted wild horse.  Note the top knot from cockleburrs

Another post tonight as there is so much more to share.