November 16 - 30, 2016:
It was a smooth ride from Bisbee on route 80 to Benson and then on route 10 west to Tucson. We arrive at noon time, get settled in and then it’s numerous people coming around to welcome us back. In the off season the campground has cleared much of the overgrown brush between campground lanes and our site is much roomier looking than we remembered it. Hopefully this will help the problem last year with packrats building nests in RV’s and engine compartments.
It’s good to be back here in Tucson, back in the borderlands where the border situation is fine, public relations are good with the hispanic population, everything is under control and the politicos will stay out of it. The local Borderlands Brewery even has a special beer called “Beer without borders”. I have managed to find a few new murals and other sights around town to photograph in the past days.
|Agave Goddess mural on Benjamin Supply building in Tucson|
|Artist Fin dad from Cork, Ireland painted this mural|
"Vergiss". This mural was originally painted in Berlin
was destroyed and this is the second iteration
|The sacred heart of Tucson mural|
|An old favorite mural across street from new Hotel|
construction site and "Shot in the dark" coffee shop
|Great design and vibrant colors|
I am attempting to minimize this blog as it’s becoming too time consuming and disruptive to my RV lifestyle. I’ve been checking other peoples blogs for ideas which tend to be very social media oriented, very professional, with how to RV topics, advertisements, etc. They are all focused on getting many hits, likes, comments and referrals similar to Facebook. I don’t know how these people do it, they must spend most of their time inside the RV working on their blog, almost like it’s a “heaven forbid” job, I don't want to go there !
Back here in Tucson, I am finding many live music events to attend. Twinkles and I go downtown to the “Screening Room” which is a small alternative theater. I was there mainly to see Carlos Arzate, a very creative local singer-songwriter musician. He has a great band, the Kind Souls” and recently did a “tiny desk concert” video at the "Stone House" out in the desert which made it to their final competition. He was playing his solo acoustic original songs which were interesting but not as entertaining as his band stuff. Another band followed playing extremely loud electric rock to an old Sci-Fi movie background, it was just too weird. Twinkles was holding her hands over her ears until moving to the lobby and will probably never attend another show with me.
Next I went to the Hotel Congress for the Casa Maria Thanksgiving Benefit concert. I was somewhat disappointed in the event as attendance was light considering a few of the most interesting Tucson musicians, Rich Hopkins and the Luminaries, Gabriel Sullivan and Billy Sedlmayr were performing. Also distressing was the fact that they the benefit concert had to end at 10:30 PM as some DJ music thing was scheduled. A very catchy and touching song was written for the soup Kitchen main man, Brian Flagg who has run the Food Bank for many years.
|Gabriel Sullivan in blue lights and smoke was eerie|
|Billy Sedlmayr has a tragic dark past but somehow the|
man still has a beautiful smile and a twinkle in his eye
We go to the Tucson Museum of Art with friends from the campground for their Annual Holiday Artisans Market. This is an incredible market, with about 100 great craft and art vendors. We didn’t help them much as we came back with only a cheap pair of earrings and a delicious desert aptly named a “Chocolate Bomb”.
I returned to the museum later to see their new exhibits on “The new Westward, Trains, Planes and Automobiles that move the modern west, Native American portraits by Henry C Balink and an amazing collection of Latin American Folk Art collected and donated by Peter C. Cecere.
|This painting was not flat as you walked past it, you felt the|
illusion of movement and perspective. I'm sure there is a
better art term to better describe ?
|A painting of a typical western railroad town. I think|
I have been there.
|This was done with colored pieces of wood|
|Wood Guthrie, Bound for Glory painting.|
I love the curved irregular format of this,
like the man himself
|Love these weathered mid 40's pickup trucks|
|The portraits were so colorful and detailed to|
accentuate the strong features of the subjects
|Everything was perfect including the frames|
|A nice artistic panel on the museum exterior|
The eating and drinking have been excessive for the past month or so and with the holidays approaching will only only get worse, so I’m back to LA Fitness this week. I wish there was another way, I hate the muscle bound mentality of the gym crowd, but no pain, no gain is the rule ? Also have taken a few hikes in the desert.
|A macro of a decaying Saguaro|
|The typical desert landscape |
In regard to over eating, the annual Thanksgiving feast is put on by the campground with much assistance from campground volunteers. I can’t image a campground with more community involvement and activities than this place, it’s very special.
Then it’s to Monterey Court to hear a good blues band, Quarter Royale, who have a very dynamic lead guitar player. I love a band who launches into a Jimi Hendrix song without hesitation and does it well.
Twinkles and I have a “date night” going downtown for a light dinner followed by a concert by local musicians at the Fox Theater. The concert is a reenactment of the legendary “Last Waltz” concert by “The Band” on Thanksgiving day in 1976. It is the first time we have been to the Fox Theater and it is beautifully restored inside, a real treasure ! I have to admit, I never really liked the music of “The Band”, but I admired their personality, their vibe and musicianship. The concert had many of the best Tucson musicians performing many of the songs from the Last Waltz.
My new favorite Sunday afternoon activity is the Sunday Sessions at Borderlands Brewery. Kevin Pakulis puts on a great show, with a couple of veteran musicians and special guests, a sort of a Sunday afternoon jam. The Brewery is in an old brick industrial building decorated with southwest art work and has a lively crowd.
There were also a couple of Campground concerts in the mix by Jay Haircloth, “Bat” and Arizona Blues Hall of Fame members “Grams and Krieger”, all good shows. There are usually two concerts per week, of various music genres for approximately 2 hours duration with an expected $5 donation per person.
We have a new feline member to our family with “Alice” from the Pima Animal Care Center. I am hoping Alice is a “cool cat” who is calm and travels well, time will tell ? This campground is basically a dog park, more cat people are needed here.
I seem to be constantly on the run between the campground and the local library, various music venues, the gym, shopping, local attractions, etc. There are people here who hardly ever leave the campground, or go downtown, especially at night, they must wonder about me ?
|Children's art project on display at Library with theme|
of water conservation. This painting was by a 10 year old.
|Beautiful poems accompany the art works|
That's all for now,Twinkles, Slick and Alice