New Years Eve in Tucson

Usually on this day I am writing about my life during the past year, but at the moment I am still trying to integrate my life of the last month. Quiet time for reflection consists of a few moments here and there as the miles pass, and then I am usually either writing or trying to knit on bumpy pavement. As we speak.

Yesterday was fun as we looked up two different sets of friends that Mo had in Tucson. The first people, Joe and Joan, have been friends with Mo since she and Carol lived in Monterra in the 70’s, and were actually married at the ranch there. They lived in a typical Arizona country club, with winding streets and generic houses that went on for a long way, but their home inside was lovely and their xerixcaped gardens were great. They have only lived there for a little more than 2 years, moving from Grass Valley in California and they loved it. We visited with them at their home for a time before going to Wes and Gayle’s home just a few miles away in the same area. Gayle called while we were traveling and suggested that we all come there for dinner instead of trying to go to a restaurant. She said, “I’ll just throw something in a pot, so it’s not a bit of trouble.” Mo had thought that it might be nice for the two couples to meet, but till now that hadn’t actually happened.

Wes and Gayle are Mo’s next door summer neighbors back in Rocky Point, but they are only there for 3 or 4 months a year and then come back to Arizona for the rest of the time, especially the winter. They had a truly lovely home on an acre or so along a typical Arizona arroyo with palo verde trees and cactus all around. The home was like something out of Sunset magazine showing contemporary desert living, with a barbeque patio that rivaled most kitchens I have seen, a big southwest style outdoor fireplace/over, with adobe walls and a beautiful waterfall. The waterfall was very similar to the one at Joe and Joan’s home, so I guess it’s the thing to do in the desert when you have no grass, you need some kind of water here and there.

The inside of the home was every bit as memorable with all the southwest décor that is so open and full of light. There were big windows with views on three sides of the mountain ranges around Tucson and we watched the sunset while eating some kind of incredible appetizers made with corn tortillas, shrimp, avocado and cilantro with a great pepper kick. Gayle also made lovely Cosmopolitans, which were new to me and a surprise as well since I didn’t think I liked vodka at all. Could do that again!

From appetizers in the living room we ambled to the dining room for a meal that was surely more than “something in a pot”. We had some kind of famous southwest chicken soup called “posole” that had hominy in it, but it wasn’t anything like the hominy I remember because this was really really good. They also served corn salsa, and green corn tamales that they brought back from Puerto Vallarta, beef tamales, and chicken enchiladas. After dinner she brought out the liqueurs with desserts and a can of whipped cream which made us all laugh. It was fun.

It was nice that everyone had a chance to get to know each other and I got to know Wes and Gayle a bit better so that when I get back to Rocky Point and they are there it will be fun. Gayle likes to walk and to play “hand and foot” so that’s a good start. Although her heart is here in Tucson so they may not be going back to Rocky Point many more times.

Mo and I were worn out and not up to the New Year’s party thing so we left around 10 and traveled back to the rv park and slept right through the whole thing. I put the tv on the channel where the ball was supposed to fall and don’t remember another thing. LOL

We stayed at a park called Cactus Country RV, which was just off I-10 near Houghton Road east of Tucson. It was a great choice, with really friendly staff, and in spite of being very nearly full, it was incredibly quiet. Maybe it was the direction of the desert wind, but I never heard a sound from the freeway that was about ½ miles south of us. Also, they have the night lighting restrictions in place in this part of Arizona as well and the sky was dark and brilliant with stars since the moon is in it’s waning phase and wasn’t up yet.

It’s interesting to see how we are treated in different parks. Most of the parks are geared to wintering snowbirds with lots of activities and amenities for long term stays. As a result, short timers or overnighters aren’t treated as well now and then. In this park, though, there was none of that, and I would definitely go back and stay here if traveling through Tucson, and if visiting would choose this one as a home base.

Author: kyotesue

Soil scientist/mapper working for 35 years in the wild lands of the West. I am now retired, enjoying my freedom to travel, to hike without a shovel and a pack, to knit and quilt and play, to play with photography and write stories about all of it.

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