Our first hour in Arizona was screaming breakfast, preferably outside. With the combined efforts of my I phone and Danielle's GPS we managed to stumble on The Farm. Breakfast tacos al fresco under the shade of Mesquite trees was an excellent start to our brightening day. Afterwards, we wandered the property taking in as much greenery as our eyes could handle and as much sun as our skin could bear.
After a quick pedicure and leisurely naps by the pool, we headed to Four Peaks Brewery for dinner and a sampling of some local brew.
On Saturday we took a day trip to Sedona. Lunch at the Oak Creek Brewing Company resulted in yet another flight of samplers.
A visit to Sedona wouldn't be the same without a ride or two down the naturally formed "slides" at Slide Rock State Park. Although the weather was a warm 70 degrees the water was a chilling 50. After, a quick dip with my big toe, I decidedly chickened out, but then changed my mind. I don't want to live without regrets and I would have regretted not doing this. Swimsuits on, Danielle and I gingerly stepped out to the "entrance" of the slide which is really nothing more than a tubed channel that has been carved smoothly into a perfect water slide. Danielle slipped on her first approach. Once in the water, she just slid her way down and I watched as the jets of water bobbed her along to the deeper pools at the base. I followed suit. The ride down was choppier than I expected but not as cold. It was exhilarating and refreshing. I went down again. I can see why this canyon is a hotspot for locals. The natural beauty of the red rocks combined with icy stream makes for the ideal summer escape.
The Red Rocks of Sedona
Our last evening was spent at Sage and Sand. Pulling up to one of the diviest bars I've ever seen, I was skeptical. The parking lot was an extension of the street accessible by any direction given that there was no curb nor sidewalk. Once inside, it was busy and not scary, which at that point was a big win. There was an outdoor patio that was more of a combination of grungy garage and suburban backyard. There was basketball, volleyball, ping pong, tetherball and a perfectly manicured lawn strewn with just about every other lawn game you could imagine. A live band rocked out while we watched a group of kids participate in a game known as King Kong Beer Pong, a large scale approach to the ping pong variety utilizing trash cans, and a basketball in place of cups and a ping pong. Luckily, the beer proportions didn't correlate. Climbing into the car at the end of the night I exclaimed, "That was surprisingly fun". To which Danielle replied, "That's what the reviews said".
A trip to Phoenix wouldn't be the same without a stop at the Desert Botanical Gardens. Lovely shards of chartreuse from one of my favorite artists, Dale Chihuly, was a pleasant surprise.
Delicate white flowers on a massive Saguaro cactus.
Much of the flora and fauna of the desert reminds me of the coral reef. It strikes me as odd given that each environment is so unique. I am fascinated by cacti that resemble sea urchins, brambles posing as coral and flora disguised as anemones.