Where Blackjack lives
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Where Blackjack lives

This is Montezuma’s Castle, which is not technically a castle and most definitely was not owned by Montezuma, who never traveled this far north from Mexico. It was, however, home to a resident Arizonan, one Blackjack the rattlesnake. He was a relatively docile black-tailed rattlesnake, and because Montezuma’s Castle is a National Monument, he was…

Just in time inventory
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Just in time inventory

I once lived near a gully that served as a major byway for wildlife. Through it came bobcats who liked to sit on the big rocks and sun themselves, rattlesnakes who would park themselves underneath my bird feeders and wait for dinner, and these guys. If there is one thing that javelina like better than…

Breathless with the delight
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Breathless with the delight

How long has it been sinceĀ you’ve had a friend wind you up in a swing and then let go and you spin so fast that suddenly you are staying in one spot but the world is spinning in a widening circle around you and you are breathless with delight? The swings are still there.  …

A congregation at war with itself
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A congregation at war with itself

Some of you have asked me if the places I describe in the Pegasus Quincy mystery series exist. Yes, many of them do. For example, Peg’s grandfather HT lives in the actual house in Mingus–which is close to Jerome, Arizona šŸ˜‰ –that used to be a boarding house for miners. It featured a prominent outside…

A matter of perspective
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A matter of perspective

One afternoon I looked up to see two very different clouds. One was brilliant in the sunshine, each layer clearly marked with almost luminous attention. I reveled in its beauty. The second, almost directly overhead was dark, threatening, ominous. And then I stopped for a moment to reconsider. If I were under that bright cloud,…

Because she can
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Because she can

My cat Foxy has a corkscrew for a spine. I tried to figure out why she was doing this maneuver and finally concluded she chose this position because it felt good. In addition to the yoga pose Downward Dog, perhaps we need one called Curly Cat. The child is in me still…and sometimes not so…

The not-so-thirsty agave plant
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The not-so-thirsty agave plant

One of the fun things of being a photographer is that you get to go out in the elements when saner folks are at home, staying warm and dry on a stormy day. I did take an umbrella on this rainy afternoon, but gave up when I found it impossible to balance both bumbershoot and…

The beauty of being thrifty
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The beauty of being thrifty

It is always fun when Mother Nature shows you something you didn’t expect to see. Here, the moss patterns reveal the water currents, as clearly as if they’d been drawn with crayon. And, as I looked closer, I recognized a pattern that I’d seen it before: it resembled the curve in the bark of an…

An eye for rust
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An eye for rust

As an aficionado of texture, when I came upon this old shack, I was in seventh heaven. Consider that great rusty barrel, the rain-stained wood, the stovepipe hanging at an angle, that old window missing one pane, the tattered, rusting side-panels. It was perfect! And then I discovered why is was perfect. It’sĀ notĀ real. This sheep…

Don’t always believe what you see
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Don’t always believe what you see

I was attracted to this spot by a smell that took me back to childhood, the wonderful aroma of grape Kool-Aid. This is a Texas Mountain Laurel, or Mescal Bean plant, native to the southwest. And then when I got there, I discovered this amazingly beautiful butterfly, a black Pipevine Swallowtail. One gives pleasure to…