Clifford and I are dispersed camping in northwest Arizona at the invitation of a friend. Many days are sunny and warm enough for us spend time outside. It is always fun to sit out when Clifford is playing and singing. Inside or out, I enjoy a good cup of French Press coffee as I go through my “stack,” as I call my journals and inspirational reading material. I have gained insights that would have been helpful to have learned fifty years ago, but better late than never, as the saying goes. Valuable insights have led me on a path of greater happiness in just being where I am and appreciating being alive to enjoy the beauty that surrounds me.
Even though I was dismayed to see no trees when we first arrived here, I have grown very fond of the creosote “forest” and the play of light on the mountains and mesas. With so much openness, I am always observing the sky, watching the variety of clouds and colors that come and go. Sunrise, sunset, and stormy days are most interesting.
Some days the cloud progression is quite enchanting:
Sunsets frequently put on a show:
I walk most days unless it is too windy. The wash is my favorite place to walk because of its ruggedness, boulders to gravel to sand, but some days I hike up the sides of the mesas that are not too far away.
When I hike up the mesa, photos taken from that vantage point reveal the vastness of the land. We are not hemmed in with buildings, utility poles, streets. It is a good place to be. I guess it helps that Clifford and I are introverts by nature and we appreciate the quiet and privacy we have here.
Photos on my walks are shared with family and friends as well as posts to Facebook photo groups, which I find uplifting and worthwhile. There are many people who are seeing what is beautiful in the world and I am happy to contribute to this positive awareness.
We and our neighbor pick up trash that has been strewn about by people coming into the parking lot off the exit and trash left by some campers. Hopefully our actions will prompt others to be more mindful of the importance of caring for our environment.
Clifford: Behind the scenes, Clifford’s non-profit is becoming more active with plans to get the website updated and active again. Sewing is a handy skill that he employs as often as need be. Sometimes we hike together and occasionally he goes on longer exploratory hikes by himself. Always, his ham radio is a commitment he takes seriously. And music, music, music – a new life direction that had been put on hold during the years of active research.
Mid December brings much colder temperatures and late December is a time of celebration with the winter solstice, our anniversary, and Christmas.
The last day of the year, a rainbow appears over Cougar.
And thus we wrap up 2021!