Last month I flew out to Arizona to attend the Tucson Gem Show. It was one of those “I am even working?” kind of business trips. Endless bead shopping, meeting new (and familiar) faces in the jewelry-making world, and driving through the desert with the top down after flying in from frigid-frozen Illinois.
I always choose a window seat when I fly. I cross my ankles, try not to bother the guy next to me, and get out a notebook. Then I press into the window for the rest of the flight, writing notes with arrows that point to some cryptic sketch.
Going west the colors of the landscape change from the frosty gray-green of frozen fields to the iron-ore red of the high desert, and then to the dusty tan of the south-southwest sands. Lakes and rivers are forgotten. Now just a few creeks show themselves: undulating black snakes below. Some parched, dry as a bone.
And the land changes, too, as the plains slowly rise to meet foothills, that quickly crumple into snow-capped Rockies.
And then to watch how civilization succeeds, or fails, at taming the land. I love looking down on tidy subdivisions laid out with straight streets, and little cul de sacs. But even more I love seeing these little street maps halt abruptly at some mountain, because who can tell a mountain to move?
Mountain: 1; Subdivision developer: 0.
In one barren spot there was a tidy line of satellite dishes (I think), like white map pins on a map. The land was perfectly wild and windswept, and the satellite dishes looked so space-age and tech-smart. They reminded me of a string of pearls, but even cooler than that: an irregularly strung string of pearls! Like stars in a constellation, some grouped here and some spaced out. Delightful. Like a Fibonacci sequence.
But more on that next week . . .