Hubby and I took Mom north of Phoenix.
We headed up to Cottonwood past hills “stubbled” with saguaro cacti.
We spent the night at the Pines Motel. I was entranced by the note pad next to the phone: it was computer paper cut up and stapled together. They pride themselves on being green. We had a great dinner at Nic’s. Hubby and I have been there before, and they actually manage not to cross-contaminate his food with gluten. It helps that he orders simply–the crab legs, baked potato, and salad with his own salad dressing (we carry packets of gluten free salad dressing with us). In the evening we played Bananagrams, a game that is fast becoming a family favorite.
Next day we drove up the mountain to Jerome, an old mining town. Inside a gift shop we discovered a museum of Jerome’s history. We got in for the senior bargain rate of $1 each. When we traveled in Canada and the NW US last summer, we were frequently shut out of senior discounts because they seemed to raise the bar for the senior price when we got to each destination ;). This time hubby preempted that trouble. He told the lady he was buying tickets for 3 old people so she lectured him while she took his $3, not realizing it was all part of his plan.
Inside I learned a lot about the history of mining. If you were reading my poems during the Tupelo Press 30/30 you might have read a poem I wrote about mining in Globe, Arizona. I wrote it in honor of a lady whose father was one of the early Jerome miners. Like her father, many of those early miners were Mexican.
The most fascinating part of the museum was learning about medical care provided to the miners. I began to picture what it would have been like to be stuck underground in one of those early mines and to get hurt or sick. Take a look at the pre-printed chart below. There weren’t women miners, so the gynecological section must have been for family members or the very many prostitutes living and working in Jerome.
This is where copper comes from:
Later we stopped at the winery for the tasting bar. (You knew that was coming, right?) We didn’t want to taste too much because of the high altitude and Mom’s heart condition, so hubby told the wine-pourer (I’m sure there is an official title; I just don’t know what it is) he wanted to buy a bottle and she let us (OK, that means mainly me) taste a few for free. I settled on the, of course, chardonnay. I will say, though, that Jerome wine is not my cuppa. I asked the wine-pourer where the vineyards are. I couldn’t imagine them so far up the mountain, but what do I know about vineyards (although obviously at least one branch of my ancestors knew a lot). She looked a little sheepish when she answered that they are outside Tucson. Hahaha. That’s a long way from Jerome! Now I feel bad that I gave a certain friend a bottle of Jerome wine.
The building that overlooks all of Jerome and is arguably the main tourist draw is the Jerome Grand Hotel. I had read that it was the original hotel in Jerome, operating when the miners needed care. You can get the best view of the building from their own website.
It wasn’t until I got there that I saw ASYLUM signs there. Note the old fashioned elevator door. I want you to know that Ms. Claustrophobia here (that’s moi) went up on the first ride all by her lonesome. I was so proud of myself. In the following view, I am riding with Mom who is examining the panel or the Otis Elevator inspection certificate.
Before we left town, hubby bought Mom a gorgeous scarf. When it’s open it displays so many colors and looks beautiful with her coloring. Blue, green, orange, pink, purple, gold.
After Jerome we all agreed to drive up to beautiful Sedona for dunch (or is it linner?). Unfortunately, we couldn’t find a single restaurant we could trust for gluten-free dining that was open so early (about 4PM). Luckily, we had cheese, turkey slices, crackers, and apples so Mom could eat something. We had to drive all the way back to the Phoenix area and stopped at the first P.F. Chang’s we could find.
The scarf purchase inadvertently led us to our next big adventure. That was the day I gave Mom training how to wear scarves! We had fun, and I even figured out a new way of tying for myself.
Now ask me if I’m writing? hahahahahahahaha