Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Arizona. Grand Canyon State
Journeyed over to Arizona this Thanksgiving weekend. While every single tourist seemed headed to the Grand Canyon, I chose to stay in the heart of red rock country aka Sedona. A quiet little town snuggled among red towers of sandstone. Cathedral rock, Coffee pot, Bell & Snoopy to name a few. The town reminded me of Santa Fe in some ways. Places like this always attract the painters, the sculptors, the photographers and at times characters like me.
Sedona is rich in history too. There are several Native American historical sites close to Sedona. (Another reason why I chose Sedona) Native American culture and history is something close to my heart. The Sinagua lived here from about 500 AD to around 1400 AD. Sinagua is a Spanish word meaning without water. People without water. Sedona like vast portions of Arizona is very dry. The climate is harsh and water scarce. Archaeological findings indicate that the Sinagua were a very resourceful people. They truly understood the land. Trees, shrubs, grass and cactus which looked dry and insignificant to me, were deeply valuable to the Sinagua. They all had a purpose. For example, the commonly found Yucca plant was used as food, as medicine, as fiber and various other things!
The Tuzigoot National Monument, the Wupatki National Monument and the Montezuma Castle National Monument all provide a glimpse into what was a rich culture. Around 1400 AD, these settlements were mysteriously abandoned. Archaeologists have no clue why!. The Hopi however believe the Sinagua migrated to the north and joined them.
While in Arizona, the Grand Canyon is a "Did you not go there? What is wrong with you ?" must visit.
If you are looking to absorb the grand view, a holiday weekend is probably not the best of time. People from all over the world busy clicking, smiling, giggling, yaking, profounding and busy posing. People eagerly waiting for other people to get off that perfect Kodak point.
This was my first visit to the Canyon. Even though I wished all the tourists would vanish, it was a great experience nevertheless. Some day I would like to hike all the way to the bottom. Soak up the whole place all to myself.
All in all, a nice trip. Expanded my collection of Native American pottery. And the pictures came out well exposed. Am beginning to get a better handle on exposure and color finally. Happy!
I have a few more pictures here
Quote of the day
"You know you're from Arizona when you feed your chickens ice cubes to keep them from laying hard-boiled eggs."~Local Saying (via Quote Garden)