Thursday, June 27, 2013

Doing Phoenix

by Pa Rock
Desert Rat

My very good friend, Daniel Murphy, a psychologist with whom I worked while on Okinawa, arrived in Phoenix on Tuesday evening for a brief visit.  It is the first time that we have seen each other since I left the island last July.  Daniel and I are both leaving Phoenix in the morning - he is going to Seattle and I am headed for Kansas City and the Ozarks.

During the short visit I have been busy trying to show Daniel the highlights of Phoenix, not an easy chore in today's 112 degree heat.  (Tomorrow and Saturday are supposed to be 118 each day!)  Yesterday we had lunch with two Luke friends of mine, one of whom is also a psychologist.  Later we drove to the old town part of Glendale where we walked through a couple of antique stores / flea markets.

I made a great "find" at one of those flea markets - two framed western prints, very unique with a rodeo theme - signed by the artist, a fellow named "Rocky M."  I felt like I was meant to have them!

Last night we went to see Man of Steel which proved to be a stink bomb of a movie - poorly conceived, badly written, and painfully wooden acting.

Our stops today included Cabela's, a store focused on outdoor activities.  The store, very similar to Bass Pro, had some great aquarium exhibits and several wildlife dioramas, lots of things to attract and educate children.  But there were also guns, guns, and more guns!  I had no idea that it was possible to buy automatic and semi-automatic rifles right over the counter - but you can!  There was also a special area identified as "Youth Guns," a great place for little Adam Lanza's to dream and shop.   (Gun buyers in Arizona have to be at least eighteen-years-old, but there does not appear to be an intelligence standard.  Apparently if you're smart enough to find the store, you're smart enough to own a weapon of mass destruction.)

Our afternoon was spent viewing the American Indian exhibits at the Heard Museum.  Barry Goldwater donated his large collection of Kachina dolls to the Heard back in the 1960's, and many of them were on display - along with information on many of the tribes of the West and examples of their craftsmanship.  We also had a great Mexican lunch in the cafe at the Heard.

Tonight we are packing to head to our separate destinations in the morning.

It is great seeing an old friend.  I really miss my family of friends on Okinawa - and I hope they are all able to come and visit before too long!

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