In March we went to Phoenix to visit my cousin T. She was having some health challenges so we went to help her and lend some moral support. We usually stay with a friend of my mothers who lives there, a short drive from cousin’s home, so we had a little respite from the hectic day to day. T and her children and mom are some of the closest family I have and we make the 6 hour drive a couple of times a year. They come to LA roughly the same frequency to visit other family, so we get to see them every few months. Our visits are always a marathon of shopping, cooking and eating whether in Phoenix or Los Angeles.
On this trip, our friend, a wonderful sculptor in her own right, had passes to the Desert Botanical Garden to see the Chihuly exhibit. Dale Chihuly is an American glass sculptor and dozens of his intricate organic looking sculptures were installed amongst the desert plants. They looked like exotic plants themselves and the contrast of the brightly colored works amidst the muted greens and browns of the desert plants was striking. The wildflowers were blooming, (with the aid of judicious irrigation), the birds were chirping, and the whole effect was magical. Luckily for us, there weren’t crowds of people, so we didn’t have to wait in the lines of the photo above, nor did we have to fight the masses once inside.
We spent a restful afternoon escaping for a moment the harsh reality of our new lives without Jake, thinking the entire time how much he would have loved it.