Hovatter rd---I'm confident there's a fine spot to sleep here.
I drive south across this canal. Recognize it? It is the CAP (Central Arizona Project) canal bringing Colorado River water to Phoenix and Tucson. Both cities would be crippled without it. Imagine clean, cold, snow-melt water flowing at about 4 mph to thirsty folks deep in the desert. I think this project cost a billion dollars to build decades ago.
Perhaps a quarter mile away--settled cozily in for the night---enjoyed it so much I stayed two nights.
Next morning from a nearby hill I see two campers--more adventurous than I settled miles out in this pristine desert. Can you see them just to the right of center. Considered visiting them.
Bicycled a bit--sat down to read-----AND THEN---AND THEN.
Heard this heliocopter sputtering--certainly in trouble--got my camera and hurried to its landing at a bare spot near the interstate.
It settled down unharmed and its occupants scrambled over it looking for the problem.
In 15 minutes its twin showed up--landing on the roadway----And then I understood the urgency. A man's life is hanging in the balance. Cop car appeared from nowhere protecting it from traffic.
In 3 minutes flat the patient was gently carried to the second copter. He was alive--I saw him move.
And flown away in a flash. A repair truck showed up within the hour and fixed the ailing copter and away it flew---they waved a friendly goodbye to this impromptu reporter.
Suddenly realized I'm camped at a low mountain pass----and water does not run uphill--so how is it getting from the valley below up here (at least a hundred feet higher)----bicycled and hiked to get this view of the lift zone. Of course! Its pumped up here and sent cruising on its merry way across the next valley. (wonder how many times it must be lifted in its full course to Tucson and if it's expensive to lift water) That building, roof just visible, houses the pumping station.
RANDY PHILOSOPHIZES: It seems the world revolves around me---and of course it does---and around you. Which is another way of saying that anyplace is interesting----and what it takes to make this--or any--spot LIGHT UP with fascination is to simply begin to NOTICE----cast my attention about in a curious and focused way---like Superman's x-ray vision. I read once that anyone can NOTICE their way to enlightment. ( in the instant of attention we are in the present ) Certainly I've learned to notice my way to INTERESTING. Here are a few other things I noticed in my 2 night stay here:
1. Noticed a bee crawling on the ground--unable to fly--remembered reading that they sometimes just run out of fuel--that they need sugar---SOOO---I offered her a teaspoon of sugar water--to my astonishment, she drank. (probosis came out like a straw and sucked in several draughts) then she fussed around about a minute, gathering herself together it seemed and then--FLEW AWAY--to my delight.
2. Noticed a large freshly fallen Saguaro cactus and reflected that it will live on for several more years just lying here. What if people faded this gradually into oblivion--then I realized that in fact many of us do.
3. Noticed that this is a super good year for the desert---heavy rains--lots of beautiful grass--apparantly the seeds just waited out the last 5 years of drought.
Bottom line: Any spot cooperates with me to light up my brain.