Thursday, April 16, 2009

To Hell and Back...

...or actually, just Sanders, Arizona.

Don't get me wrong. Sanders is a perfectly nice place. Perfectly nice if you like really small towns, just off the reservation. As in, a town with a teeny-tiny little post office, a school or two, a "diner" that consists of a trailer with a couple additions and not-so-great service, and a whole bunch of super nice residents.

And no, there was no sarcasm implied in that last sentence. Everyone I've met in Sanders was very nice (except the server at the diner, that is).

It's just that Sanders is so far from Phoenix, and the nearest decent motel to Sanders is still over 50 miles away. Add to that the fact that Sanders schools - where I worked today - observe Daylight Saving Time since their students primarily live on the Navajo Reservation, and the rest of Arizona does not.


I had to be in Sanders at 8:30 this morning, which was really 7:30 for me, and I had to drive an hour to get there. So I had to leave at 6:30 to drive an hour and arrive there at 8:30... just too early for me!

Add to that the fact that I do not sleep well away from home, and the fact that I drove through insane weather conditions to get to Holbrook last night. 50-60+ mph winds, snow, blowing was an adventure to say the least. Once again though, my good old Maxima was a tank and got me there and back safely. 200K+ miles on the odometer, dents and dings, stained carpet and all, Max is my hero.

I added another bizarre Arizona place name to my list today. Check this out, from beautiful downtown Holbrook:

Photo credit: Tristan Tom (

What the hell happened here?

One bonus of this work trip was the opportunity to make a new acquaintance. While stuffing my face with the complementary breakfast at my motel, I enjoyed a nice conversation with a fascinating woman I met. A retired journalist from Connecticut, she now enjoys painting, traveling and working on behalf of an amazing organization that supports animal shelters. I look forward to getting to know her better online, through her art and her blogs. It seems as though she's led an intriguing and adventure-filled life!

Her art blog is HERE and her project supporting shelter animals is HERE.

Carrie, it was a pleasure meeting you. Thanks for the company!

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