The Desert  

                       When the weather where you live gets cold and uninviting,
                          use your imagination and take a mini vacation in Tucson. 

What a beautiful day.  I believe it is about 76 degrees now.  I'd like to share a little of our spot
under the sun with you.

If you walk down the path leading from your back door,  you will suddenly see a clearing, and
just beyond you will see desert brush, huge Saguaros, some Ocotillo, Prickly Pear and lots of
Jackrabbits and maybe a few Coyote.   A family of Quail may cross your path.  You are entering
a land of enchantment.

You can bet the sun will be warm, and there is a large rough scrub oak Gazebo with benches lining
the inside, just waiting for you to rest awhile.  Be careful, don't get a splinter. An old fashioned
fountain in the middle of the Gazebo drawing it's water from a deep well, will quench your thirst.  
It tastes so good, 'cause now you are beginning to get

After you've rested awhile, you will find a pile of 'walking sticks' leaning against the back wall of
the Gazebo. Pick one that is slightly taller than you are, and fits your hand well. They are perfect to
help you along, as you might want to hike up that trail leading to Catalina mountain.   At the foot of
the mountain, you will see all the corrals. They are hidden from where you are sitting in the Gazebo,
but you can get a mount there and head up the mountain.

A leisurely ride beneath the warm sun, with the breeze blowing gently across your face, will refresh
all your senses and make you wish you could stay forever. The wildlife scooting through the brush
may startle your horse, so be careful.  I wasn't going to spoil your enchantment by telling you about
the occasional rattlesnake you might hear.  They always give a warning with their rattles, so you won't
come too close. Don't worry, your beautiful dapple gray gelding knows what to do to steer clear of them.

As you ascend, you can see for miles.   The city skyline way off to the south, the low lying residential
areas sprawling to the west, and the large brush filled desert in the distance, leading to the Tortolito
mountain range just beyond the Saguaro forest.
Stay as long as you like. Time seems to stand still in the desert. Only the shadow of the sun moving
across the mountainside, changing shapes and colors as you watch, gives any hint that time is passing.  
If you stay long enough, you will experience the paintbrush of God as He tops the mountain peeks across
the vast expanse of sky, with the brightest oranges and fuchsias and gold that you have ever seen.   And
as you watch the colors fade together and darken, you realize that He is saying goodnight, and giving you
hope for a bright tomorrow.
When you get back home, you will feel like a million. You will have had the greatest vacation
in years, and it only takes a few minutes.


                                                                                                                     Dawn  Tucek 1996