Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Life in H-E-Double Hockey Sticks

Once again I have decided to go along with Michelle Ward's plot to fill up the internet with my musings! Street Team Challenge
# 15
is to blog about where you live or where you are from.

I live in H-E-Double Hockey Sticks aka Phoenix, Arizona. Not my actual mailing address but who wants to explain one more time that yes, there can be a Peoria, AZ as well as a Peoria, IL. And no, I've never been to the 'other' Peoria.

Phoenix is a nice place to live if you don't mind the constant dust. The dryness. And oh yes, the eternal, infernal, @#(*&%^%^@@**!!


Yes, it's a dry heat. But no, that doesn't matter once it gets over 105 degrees. Which it does in May sometime. And then it doesn't let up until November when the air once again becomes breathable by humans. I'm not against the sunshine. I quite like it, in fact. We had the same 300+ days of it in Colorado where residents could enjoy the occassional snowfall in August. Well, you could where I lived at 8600 feet above sea level. Down in only Mile High Denver, it would be 91 and sweltering. But I digress.
As the fifth largest city in the US, Phoenix is growing at a rate of about 7,000 people per day or so I hear. And we are in the midst of an 8 year drought (though blessedly it has been raining for nearly a week, but it's that spitty, fitty kind of rain they have here all too often, nothing substantial). So as usual out here in the Western American states, we are also having our perpetual water crisis. If you think this is bad, ask Las Vegas.

Dust storms. Did I mention dust storms? No? Well, I do like to pretend they do not exist. For Christmas I want a pressure washer so that I can save time scrubbing off the patio furniture before we want to use it.

So what's good about living here, you ask. Lots of stores. I only go to the ones with parking spaces in front of them. I'm not traipsing through a noisy mall full of idiot teeny-boppers. The new Cardinals football stadium and Coyotes hockey arena area which is a couple of miles from here and is growing up to be a small city in and of itself. Not nearly enough Starbucks with drive-thru windows... unlike Portland, OR where it seems that there is one on every block!

It is easier not to get lost because it's so flat that you can see everywhere. That's something I didn't appreciate until I was back in Ohio recently and got lost a block from my hotel because I couldn't see it or the sign.

Once you get over the novelty of it, the Sonoran desert is quite beautiful. There are palm trees and cactus everywhere. Bright, beautiful, lush bougainvillea and oleanders, lantana and sage. Roses that bloom all year around. The prim-looking little citrus trees with their repressed lollipop shapes and tree trunks painted white to ward off insects. Beautiful golf courses every ten feet. When I worked in Sun City, I crossed three golf courses on my three mile commute!

Plenty of twisty roads where we can drive our MINI Coopers and have fun. Just have to be careful not to run into a javelina (wild pig) on the road. Or an ATV, but that's another story and not mine to tell since I didn't even see it happen. If you like red rocks and cactus, there's plenty of scenery. If you like gambling, there's an indian casino every 47 miles because AZ is mostly American Indian reservations.

Speaking of reservations, the Apache reservation in northeastern Arizona is absolutely gorgeous. More people are familiar with the Hopi, Zuni, Ute, and Navajo reservations in northern Arizona, where the land is dry and desolate. The Navajo people are good-humored, gentle, easy-going people who got screwed when it came to their reservation. And the US Government is still screwing them through over-regulation. Not every part of the US is as free as it should be. But again, I digress, so don't flame me.

All in all, I like the city where I live, I like my house, and I like my friends. I love my little family of me, the Sports Fan, and our Golden boys, our cars, and for right now, Nana, my mom who is staying with us. I know I've got a good life and shouldn't complain. But if we didn't find something to complain about, would we strive to make our lives better? I'd be too busy playing with the dogs, making art, and groovin' to the love that abounds in our home.
But I'd still rather be in Colorado!


Blogger michelle ward said...

Marilyn, thanks for joining the Crusade. After reading your observations of Arizona I'm afraid to go back there! I can't take the heat, even if it comes with the sun and less humidity. You crack me up with your comment that if we didn't have anything to complain about we'd never imporve our lives :) My great aunt used to say: "Can't complain, darnit. And I love to complain."

Wednesday, December 12, 2007 8:09:00 AM MST  
Blogger HeArt Collective said...

AZ really is as bad as you say. I've been there a few times and I did NOT love it. I have to say that even though its really pricey here, the Bay Area is my favorite place. We're in the East Bay so that we have plenty of sunny weather and we're just 15 minutes to Freak Town a.k.a. Berkeley, 30 mins from SF and Napa Valley is totally reachable from here. My Best Friend lives in So. Lake Tahoe so I can get to the snow (where I met my DH, btw) at Heavenly if I need to get cold and wet and remember why Bailey is my second favorite home.


Thursday, December 13, 2007 4:10:00 PM MST  
Blogger Barone said...

Silly wabbitt!!!! I loved reading this...we connected before as I live in Scottsdale, though far from all the fun stuff you mentioned, well not all of it...there is a javelina digging up my garden as I write. Loved the digression regarding the native americans. We do a lot of camping on their land and I am heart broken each time by the way they are still treated in America.

I thought you might mention the horror of what can happen if you leave your cat outside...but oh yes, we implied coyotes regarding hockey.
If you are ever up my way....cave creek highway and scottsdale rd...do stop over for some refreshment! Sorry to go on but it is rare to meet a fellow blogger so close to home. Jodi Barone

Thursday, December 13, 2007 6:26:00 PM MST  
Blogger Cath Sheard said...

OMG the heat. From a New Zealand perspective gotta say - it sounds hideous! It's been 77 here the last few days and we've been complaining about the heat. Don't know we're born huh? Hope you get to go play in the snw sometimes.

Friday, December 14, 2007 12:17:00 PM MST  
Blogger Babsarella said...

Yeah it's hot, but it's a dry heat (he he he). I'm from South FL, so I know all about heat and humitity. Loved hearing all about your town. I do agree that Colorado is lovely, especially for about 4 days during ski season!!!

Friday, December 14, 2007 2:37:00 PM MST  
Blogger Janine said...

Thanks for the insight into Arisona and the dry heat! It has been up around 88 here with humidity.... and so much rain in the last few weeks.... the grass literally grows over night! Would still like to visit Arizona though!

Saturday, December 15, 2007 3:04:00 AM MST  
Blogger SyAnne Bleu said...

LOL! I know what it can be like when you have those Gertrude Stein moments! She once said of Oakland, CA, "There is no THERE, there." Your writing has captured that moment.

Saturday, December 15, 2007 12:18:00 PM MST  
Blogger &rew said...

Hello Wabbit! As you already knew this, I have been in Phoenix several times, and yes, I know what you are talking about when heat is mentioned. I'll never forget one night where it was 113 degrees (AT NIGHT!!) when I came back from a trip up in Flagstaff last August! And my father has been in Tuscan, AZ (I found several pictures of the house two days ago) more than 60 years ago - I still have his AZ driver license! He came back to NJ because his nose and his throat could not adapt themselves to the Arizona heat! Thanks for sharing - great post!

Sunday, December 16, 2007 7:36:00 AM MST  
Blogger girl_gone_thread_wild said...

I just returned from a week trip to Phoenix and was WAITING for the warmth to smack me in the face, but instead I was greeted with a cold front. lol Ay yi yi!

Thursday, December 20, 2007 12:22:00 PM MST  
Blogger Connie said...

LOL! This AZ critique really had me laughing - and it is all so true! I spent 5 months in Arizona working (in 2006)... 124 degrees in August...but i loved the shopping and the restaurants and the incredible art.....

Monday, December 24, 2007 12:46:00 AM MST  
Anonymous Becky New said...

Oh dear! Sounds like a terrible place! lol.... I liked it when I was there... but that was only for a week. I'm sure I'd feel differently if I had to stay on... My Gram used to say *Can't complain, no body'll listen!* ha@!

Thursday, December 27, 2007 6:10:00 PM MST  

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