Sunday, September 3, 2023

Life Goes on in the Desert

 August 22 - September 2, 2023
Tombstone, Arizona

Looking at our "original" route for this year's travels I see we dodged a mess of smoke and fire in Oregon! This year we went north through Utah in April and then south down the coast hoping that would mean we missed the smoke (which has become its own season now) in the late summer. While we had perfect weather on the shortened route, we would not have missed the smoke had we still been on the road this month. I'd always rather be traveling, but it seems cutting it short this year was a blessing. 

From a friend's FB post near Brookings, Oregon - about where we'd be at this time.

Several of our RV buddies have posted visits to the Gadsden Hotel in Douglas, but I've forgotten about it when we've visited the little border town in the past. The monsoons are creating an incredible carpet of green throughout the area, so the 40 mile drive is especially beautiful. 

Cafe 333 is a lovely coffeehouse/dining room at the hotel where we enjoy a tasty Tuesday morning breakfast. Like most border towns, Douglas is struggling, but stepping inside the hotel is like taking a step back to the early 1900's when mining and ranching were in their heyday. 

A perfect little coffee house.

The lobby is gorgeous. Standing on the steep marble stairs to take the photo, I'm impressed that brides navigate them in high heels!

In addition to the dining room, there's a fun tavern and two retail boutiques. 

I love finding these old details.

The stained glass accents make the space glow with drenched color.

It's wonderful to see the solid wood and curved glass of the entry next door have survived for decades.

What was once the "company store" for the large mine, the space now stores vintage items (maybe planning to be a museum?)

A wall near the border I can support.

One of the things I love best about our property is all the visits we enjoy from the deer, quail, dove, finches, etc. This year the mesquite is so thick and green we often hear them more than see them.

A days-old fawn stops by with Mom.

I love all the cute spots!

This quieter, slow-down time is a mixed blessing. It's always a treat to enjoy the natural beauty that surrounds us, to have zero schedule to keep, to appreciate our lovely little house, to visit with local friends, and to watch the seasons move through. It's also challenging for me to keep busy when I want to be busy. The outdoor heat limits those options, and there's not much I haven't already "done" with the interior. I have a couple hobbies I could get back to - yeah, I should probably do that :-)

Morning's cooler temps give me a few hours to clear out the brush that has gotten out of hand over the last several months.

Monsoons move through and around us almost every day.

Donnie and Anna surprise Bill with a belated birthday dinner and fancy desert!

Sierra Vista enjoys a good drenching.

Tombstone Courthouse State Park looks haunted in the clouds and drizzle.

Some of the storms make their way to our place - this one has high winds and dumps an inch in an hour!

Even when they don't bring any wet, we have wonderful clouds moving through every day.

I do make it to Tucson for some personal pampering and minimal shopping. Of course the day I'm there is one of the hottest of the summer! Being at 4500' in Tombstone we are always about 20 degrees cooler - thankfully.

August in a desert city.

Getting closer to Tombstone, Mother Nature makes a swipe of color across the sky.

Eventually it reaches to the mountains.

The storm quickly drops the temps for about 15 miles. It's 90 degrees when I pull into the house.

San Pedro River Valley

Taking a break from her family, this doe rests in the shade inside the fence. 

Football season is once again upon us, a big deal in our house! Saturday is our fantasy league draft, always fun with Bill and his four sons and me. Looks like I have a mediocre team this year, but only time will tell :-) 

We've been back nearly a month, September has arrived, my favorite time of year is just around the corner. 

Precious Cassidy 

Elliott out playing with his daddy.

M and M enjoying school days.