Sunday, July 30, 2006

Cananea, Sonora



It's a busy little city about 30 minutes southwest of Naco. Traffickers of every stripe are here, but copper mining is the main economic engine of this city of 30,000 people. Aurelio Rodriguez, who spent nine seasons with the Detroit Tigers, came from here. He was known for his strong defensive skills.


My first live rattlesnake



He was just a wee fella, but I'm told those can be the most dangerous ones because they'll inject ALL their venom into you. I was wearing street shoes, hiking through mud along the river and through lots of brush. A little guy like this could have tagged me easily.

Huachuca Mountains, from Mexico



This is near the headwaters of the San Pedro River, which originates in Sonora, Mexico.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

More or less today...

Image by Leo
The sky grayed and the clouds of dust came down from the north. Shadows got weird. The eternally present mountains of my youth were suddenly swallowed in brown blowing dirt. Lightning struck horizontally, vertically, anyway it wanted, burning the back yard about ten acres from here. Enough electricity in the air to power a city like Chicago for a week.
And it continues and continues.

Hail pelted steadily, no, crazily, as we tried to secure our little piece of the terra firma.

They call this the desert but, today, it is a running riverbed. While the rest of America suffers the warming effect, we here are finally cooled with 65 degree breezes and grey
Pacific Northwest skies.

Tomorrow will bring 100 degree plus temperatures and another cloudy afternoon. Hurricanes are fueling our air with the moisture we've lacked for most of the last decade. Some people elsewhere dread this weather, but we silly desert rats smile and dance in it, hoping the power goes out so we can stare aimlessly at the night sky, awestruck. When the clouds break, as always,
the universe is our replacement for the TV screen.

Friday, July 21, 2006


A man was on holiday in Kenya. While he was walking through the bush, he came across an elephant standing with one leg raised in the air. The elephant seemed distressed so the man approached it verycarefully. He got down on one knee and inspected the elephant's foot. There was a large thorn deeply embedded in the bottom of the foot.

As carefully and as gently as he could he removed the thorn, and the elephant gingerly put down its foot.

The elephant turned to face the man and, with a rather stern look on its face, stared at him. For a good 10 minutes the man stood frozen— thinking of nothing else but being trampled. Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned and walked away. For years the man remembered the elephant and the events of that day.

One day the man was walking through the zoo with his son. As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned andwalked over to where they were standing at the rail. It stared at him and the man couldn't help wondering if this was the same elephant. After a while it trumpeted loudly; then it continued to stare at him. The man summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing andmade his way into the enclosure. He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder.

Suddenly the elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of the man's legs and swung him wildly back and forth along therailing, killing him.

Probably wasn't the same elephant.

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