“Arizona is a lie!” I yelled when I woke to sub-freezing temperatures after our first night in Flagstaff.
“You’re the funniest girl I ever knew,” Kevin murmured with the gravely tone of sleep still in his voice.
Now, I understand I am a bit geographically challenged—I thought Brussels was in Germany, for cryin’ out loud—but everyone knows Arizona is warm. At least that’s what I thought. I could not have been more wrong.
We started this journey in Alaska and we’re now in Arizona—the warmest state we had been in and the coldest—they were not the ones I expected.
Once I got over the shock of how utterly cold it was in Arizona, I was fine. Melissa had steered me in the direction of buying the proper clothing for cold weather. I am learning that there is no bad weather, just bad attire. So, I donned my woolies and set out for new adventures.
We were still on Route 66 and making our way to a pet sitting job in Holbrook. That was where we met Carol and her precious kitty, Kitty. Kitty was one very loved feline and before Carol returned a week later, we knew why, she was precious. Kitty had no lack of food stations, she was fed on the table, she was fed in Carol’s room, she was fed on her special blanket on the couch, and she was fed on the kitchen floor. Our instructions were clearly written by Carol, who thought of everything. We spent one night before she left at the house, so we were fortunate to be able to chat with and get to know Carol before she left on her family vacation.
One of the instructions for Kitty was to drain the juice of one can of tuna into a bowl each evening. Carol said, “Just toss the tuna.” Being thrifty and lovers of tuna sandwiches, we did no such thing. Instead, we had delicious sandwiches for our explorations each day. Another was that Kitty likes to be spoon fed.
I know what you’re thinking, but this became a special bonding time between me and Kitty. I may have overdone it though, by the end of the week, if I put the wet food on a plate, Kitty would jump up on the table, sniff the food and look at me as if to say, “Seriously? You want me to eat off this thing?” I would then snuggle on up with my spoon and she would nuzzle a thank you against my hand and finish every bite.
It was also my way of apologizing for leaving Kitty to her own devices all day every day while we were out exploring the beautiful sites of Arizona. We quickly fell into a routine. Every morning we would empty the water bucket—that’s another story, make sure Kitty was set for the day, pack our tuna sandwiches and head out for an adventure.
We explored the Grand Canyon;
The Petrified Forest;
The Painted Desert;
Petroglyphs at Rock Art Ranch (highly recommend);
We stood on the corner in Winslow Arizona (you’re singing that now, aren’t you?);
Stretches of route 66, and so much more of the man-made and natural beauty that overflows in Arizona.
After leaving Carol and Kitty’s place we explored on our way to visit Kevin’s Navy buddy and best man at our wedding, Perry, where we saw
And spent many days hiking.
We, of course had to spend some time in Tombstone, a dream of Kevin’s since our first visit (when we only had a couple of hours) a few years back.
We also stayed with some friends we met on the ferry to Alaska when our trip was in its infancy. We went dancing with Carl and Nancy in Bisbee, met their friends, Michael and Danielle who lived in a beautiful completely off-grid, and even took a copper mine tour.
Although we spent 45 days in Arizona, I feel that it would take many more months to see all there is to see.
It has surprised me that the places I didn’t have that much interest in, Alaska and Arizona, have become two of my favorites so far.
Now off to Texas where Kevin will be sent out on a job (we knew this would happen from time to time and were prepared for it) and I will wait for him in an Airbnb and finish this blog. Happy travels everyone. Whether it’s around the world, through the pages of a book, or to the kitchen for a glass of wine, remember it’s all about the journey.
Days spent: 45 days
12/6/2022 – 01/23/2023 (with a few days spent in Colorado in the middle)
Lodging: $379 ($359 spent on a hotel while Kevin flew home for his mom’s birthday)
$20 spent for two nights in Tombstone
Average per-day price: $8.42
Average per-day price: $25.66