Tuesday, 16 November 2010


DOWN FROM THE HIGH COUNTRY---7000 to 1000 ft elevation---I'm readyto be warm again and ready for my next adventure. But I will not rush---a hundred miles in one day is more than I'm comfortable with---will "feel" my way down stopping to see what strikes me-- stopping short of re-entering civilization. Payson, Az to Phoenix is a lovely drive.

My first stop is at the tiny community of Rye---where this guy has assembled the world's largest collection of motorcycles, bicycles, and other odd conveyences. His team specializes in vintage parts and for about a thousand bucks will build you almost any motorcycle ever made---guaranteed running condition.

Then down, down, down--till I see this famous spire. Recognize it? ----Its Weavers needle---the starting point for the unending search for the Lost Dutchman's mine. To this day--lecture halls fill up to hear experts tell the facts about Jacob Waltz's fabulous find. He died not revealing its wherebouts . I think I'll camp somewhere here, becausing I'm nearing civilization.

So I just picked this spot in the nearby desert---but as you can see, I'm not level---and my propane powered fridge insist that I do better. Pay attention newbies--I will show you how to get level almost anywhere.

On the high side, dig holes for the tires to settle into---takes about a minute.

Then on the low side put boards into position. Now, carefully pull forward---Presto---

You're level ---side to side.----front to back is done with the tongue jack---a few twist and a glance at your level and you're ready for the evening show. I pause almost every day to appreciate sunset--especially colorful evening skies. Till now, I'm all alone in this desert---expecting no one----AND THEN---AND THEN.

This pretty lady drives up , walks up and asks to join me for sunset. I shook off my astonishment and said sure---got her a chair---together we photographed---the sky and each other. Perhaps in Cleveland tonight she is showing her half of this whimsey shot. (Asked that I not show her face)

Here's my shot--I'm no great shakes on photography---Diana has yet to give me a promised lesson. I most enjoy the deep reds preceeding dark. My guest is named Debby---she stayed another hour enjoying the night and trading stories.

RANDY PHILOSOPHIZES: So many wonderful surprises come to me that I'm tempted to believe "somebody up there likes me". My friend Pia says that open hearted travel is like pushing a button labeled SURPRISE. And then life --sure enough--surprises you--over and over. Some don't like surprises--but I do. One metaphysical philosopher---Redfield---declares that odd "coincidences" are the Universe's way of communicating deep truths to us. Need to think more about this.

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