Mind Trips

Sunday, May 03, 2020

Once a month, I like to write about things I’ve been doing for the past four weeks. Not only does this monthly post let you get to know me better, it provides me with a record of when I went somewhere, what I saw and heard and smelled.

But I haven’t gone much of anywhere this month except the grocery store because of the Wuhan Virus, which in politically correct terms is being called COVID-19. I’ve always considered politically correct terms dangerous because they hide the truth. I prefer to call things what they really are. But before I veer off into the political, let me get back on topic.

This is the time of year when Tucsonans spend a lot of time outdoors. Between the winter rains and the summer heat, we have a glorious few months of wonderful weather. The sun shines and the temperature is in the seventies and, possibly, the eighties. The wildflowers bloom, followed by the cactus. Those things still happened, but I didn’t see them in person.

Right now, I’m missing trips to the Reid Park Zoo. Five years ago, the elephant herd grew when Nandi was born to Semba. I made several visits to the zoo during her first year and took lots of pictures of the baby elephant. This year, Nandi got a baby sister, Mapenzi. All I’ve seen of her is photographs and one video.

The zoo has cameras throughout with online feeds, which seem to be down this morning, so I can’t even tell you how I went to the zoo virtually.

When I lived on the northwest side of Tucson, I made lots of trips to Tohono Chul Park at this time of year. They have several different gardens, as well as one area which is off the beaten track where, when the park is crowded, you can get away from other people.

That statement made me smile. A year ago, I would have been looking to enjoy the quiet. Right now, I’d love to be part of a throng of people enjoying the flowers. Sadly, that’s not possible. But they’ve posted pretty pictures of what’s blooming.

Last year, I joined the Tucson Botanical Gardens, because that’s closer to me now. This beautiful place was once someone’s home, and when you walk around it, you’ll find little signs describing what some parts of it were. The herb garden behind the house is one of my favorite places.

They’re live-streaming the butterfly garden. It’s hardly the same as being there. As a desert person, the first thing you notice when you enter the greenhouse is how humid it is! It feels like being wrapped in a blanket of moist air. You hear the sound of running water from the several pools they’ve set up among the plants. And it’s not unusual for a butterfly to zip past your face if you stand still.

The Fourth Avenue Street Fair went virtual, too, but since there was no actual street fair, that was just another online shopping site. I didn’t go.

They’ve only just started to loosen the stay-home order. It will probably be months before all the parks and museums are open. So I guess I’ll just have to wait until the Fall to visit some of my favorite places again.

Note: All photos are from ones I took in prior years.

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A Clash of Kings
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