Sunday, December 15, 2013

Amerind Museum & Soap Fetish - Dragoon, Arizona

Serendipity...you jus' never know. The mountains to the south looked inviting. I exited at Dragoon to see what kind of supplies were available in case I come back to explore.

The entrance to the Amerind Museum is about a mile from the freeway. The sign on the gate designates the place as an anthropological and archaeological research center. Soon after the gate is a cemetery...a rather unique (to my mind) amenity few facilities flaunt. The drive, reminiscent of a European country lane, winds between buildings that emanate subtle hints of opulence. It's sixty-eight point three miles east of Tuscon and so self-effacing that if you blink you may miss the single, small highway sign that mentions the museum..

Most of the gallery (below) is given over to the Fulton's collection, a hodge-podge of late 19th century impressionism and early 20th century western. But at the top of the stairs there's a room especially for contemporary Native American art. The art in that room, by its self, made the visit worthwhile. And they change the exhibit every few months.





The Museum Foundation (as of 1/29/2014) has an opening for an Executive Director. The position includes a residence and staff car.






All the rattlers I've met were quite beneficent. Least ways, didn't none uv 'em ever bite me. I guess some people need prompting.




Signs in front of employee quarters
directing "others" to picnic area.






This specialty shop is the hub of Dragoon. A soap for EVERY proclivity. Unique items from Africa too. (Just FYI...fetish is usually spelled with one T.)





Email:  mfhalb@gmail.com

Saturday, December 14, 2013

There'll Always Be a Next Time...to buy a car

The new cars weren't in (see prev post) so I went to Anza-Borrego State Park. I recommend it.

The weather was getting cool November 20th, but still warm enough at mid-day to get by with just a shirt.




Despite the chill in the air, the rocks were quite impressive.





Email:  mfhalb@gmail.com

You Are What You Drive

I ask you, is there ANYTHING more compelling than helping a friend pick out a new car? I mean, this is the MOST IMPORTANT thing there IS in this part of the world (where you are what you drive).

Early November found me coming over the hill on highway 78 through Julian to settle gently upon the thin strip of land betwixt highway S21 and the Pacific Ocean. Interstate 5 is less than half a mile east. Known as South Carlsbad State Beach, it provides a convenient staging site for the leap into L.A.

The park is one long road with sites on either side. West-side sites overlooking the water are $35.00. $25.00 puts you about 60 feet east right next to the light-rail and the highway. The bluff-side site opposite mine stayed vacant so I had an unobstructed view.

There's a military base just up the street. I know I shoulda been proud....it's not everyone gets their sunsets embellished with helicopters, eh? If I had a nationalistic bone in my body (as seems requisite these days), I'd have likely gotten a boner.


Monday, December 2, 2013

Painted Rock Petroglyph Site, Arizona





Westbound on interstate 8 halfway between Tuscon and Yuma....the lingering light of dusk all but gone.
Night's descent while on a freeway is a REAL medium (source) of annoyance; campsites, difficult enough to spot while navigating a two-lane become totally chimeric on four-with-median.

SUDDENLY!!! Eggbert's headlights ricocheted off a sign: Painted Rock Petroglyph Site...twelve miles. Twelve miles would, I figured, be far enough from DER FREEWAY to provide some quiet. Hah!...you  seein' flyin' pigs agin, bro?

10:00 p.m. ---  the last of the OHVs trundle in.

For those that enjoy white noise there's a hum. It waxes and wanes - think inorganic beach waves.....all night long and still strong when I left the next morn at 11:59.

Around 6:00 a.m. the whitenoise was joined by the moanings of a large piece of equipment, perhaps an earthmover. This was so invasive the grizzly herd that had gathered to enjoy the odoriferous delights of my breakfast bacon fled.

After completing my ablutions I trod the trail. The diminutive hill is heavily signed with admonishments to: STAY ON THE TRAIL!!! 






Someone had thrown a bag of hamburger buns into the NO WALK zone. I watched as a privatized (it's the latest fad, dontchya know?) skyhook lowered a mountaineer -- succumbed to the monetary enticement -- who, without touching the ground, neatly plucked and dropped it into the industrial size, overflowing with McDonald's wrappers, waste bin. Ah, the amenities of a campground! Small satisfaction comes in knowing the NSA probly got the perps on vid and has them doin' 10 years tuh life fellating cattle.

It's an amazing site!!


Nutrias in Love -- Hunh, hunh!!

Speaking of campgrounds, they charge (money) to camp in the squalid BLM area that encompasses the site ($10.00? - I forget). Placed among widely spaced creosote bushes are picnic-tables-with-fire-ring. In the distance two, count 'em, separate installations of pit toilets grace the skyline.

There is a small area of non-billable BLM land on the left just before the campground (watch for the electrical relay station), but the rest of the surrounding property is Tohono O'Odham reservation.

But hey!! Tha's wha' happenz when yer out on the freeway at dark.

On a historic note the campground signs say the Gila River used to flow nearby. In them daiz thar wuz hundreds, maybe thousands of people and birds, beavers, deer and elk, foxes, otters (excerpted from the sign...not made up) grizzlies and goddess only knows what else roamed the land. Ah bet thar wuz probly even Pass'ng'r Pijjins an' Dodos. Well now, rest reassured you'll have my sympathy as you try to ignore the noise and reek of fertilizer. Ah, the fruits of Manifest Destiny.

Mebbe, like for me, the rock art'll save yuh from suiciding.