Beautiful Tucson Botanical Gardens on to Chandler

Trip Start Mar 14, 2006
Trip End Mar 15, 2007

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Tuesday, April 11, 2006

While I was in Tucson, there were the largest protest marches there and in Phoenix (among many other places in the US) seen in years about the Immigration bill currently before the Senate. In fact, it interfered with our plans to visit the Sonoran Desert as we would have to have gone right in the way of the march.

We went to the Tucson Botanical Gardens instead. This is an amazing collection. It was formerly a private home and is now a private non-profit organization dupported solely by income generated by adissions, memberships, sales, events, classes, etc. It is incredibly well presented and laid out by staff and volunteers who assist with almost every aspect of the garden. I absolutely loved it and took many photos - was in fact, referred to fondly by my hostess, as a "picture taking fool". Also purchased something I have been looking for for a while - a t shirt with a quail on it (I said California, Bette said Gambel's)

And that is not all. We returned home around 1 pm and her husband fired up the grill for wonderful steaks. Ted introduced me to the mysteries of American barbeque style including a Weber Grill, getting the coals started in a kettle of sorts (I think it is called a chimney starter) where I was also shown a sort of triangular metal container or bowl (fuel holders) where I believe one may prepare hickory or mesquite wood chips. Wow. An art in itself. The meat was wonderfully "butter" soft. I hardly needed my knife. Delicious, if I do say so. We also had wonderful strawberries (we could not decide where they came from - California maybe) sliced over " Healthy Choice Cappucino Chocolate Chip Ice Cream". They had never had ice cream and strawberries together; however, I may have started a new tradition for them as they were a big hit.

I was very sorry to leave these wonderful folks and their lovely area. I must and will go back again to see them and leave more time to see the Tucson Desert Museum.

I drove up to Chandler AZ about 5:45. Chandler is a sort of bedroom community of Phoenix, I think and it is a very new (I think) subdivision. All the roads are wide, buildings are new, colours the same lovely dusty desert colours of the region. Also appears to be very clean.

Met up with Paula, an online friend and her husband, Ted. They have a beautiful new home and pool in back. Lots of rooms for lots of amazing photos from their world trips and rowing expeditions. We headed out for dinner in Ted's huge Hummer (the first step is a high one) which is high off the road and feels very safe to drive in.

We had a delicious Mexican meal (different style Mexican, I think it was called Abuelo's - very modern and upscale with a huge entranceway. Enchilada and beer. Yummmmy. After dinner we returned back to their lovely home for tea and an early night after almost seeing their very shy cat who hid among the banisters upstairs.
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