"Could I have this dance for the rest of my life?" - Anne Murray

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Sedona Vortex

No, I didn't feel it. Kind of a reverse vortex - it spit me out rather than sucking me in.  In fact the town of Sedona, AZ seems more of a center for new age tourists craving crystals and exotic forms of comfort/adventure than anything else. It's really kind of funny. How may crystal and incense stores can one possibly need? Yes, it is located in a truly beautiful spot geographically - a valley surrounded by red rock formations and rolling orange hills with plenty of greenery. The town itself is a strip of tourist oriented galleries, restaurants and high-end souvenirs crowded with cars and jeeps for hire.  The residences around it are impressive adobe and Spanish style homes and condos.  There are more psychics, tarot card readers and "Native American" spirituality dealers than you can shake a rain stick at. This is not my kind of spirituality.  It seems to be overly dependent on props/materialism. Lots of people making money off of this.

I try to be nonjudgemental about the cultures I encounter in our travels, but I think that the commercialism of this, and that fact that I've been there and done that, sends me over the edge. I apologize if I've offended.

Just yesterday a "self-help author" who runs spirituality workshops in Sedona, was convicted of negligent homicide for the deaths of three people during a sweat lodge experience he was leading. You may have heard about it in the news. He said an interesting thing: He has become aware that his profession has a great deal of arrogance, and that the experience has humbled him. Thank goodness. I hope it humbles a few more spirituality peddlers as well.

Anyway, we passed through Sedona a couple of times, but stayed in Cottonwood, in the Dead Horse Ranch State Park. (Now that name is about as far as you can get from the pretty spirituality of Sedona.) Cottonwood is kind of an old funky cool town with plenty of coffee, wine and antique stores, along with Walmart and Home Depot nearby for supplies of the more mundane sort.

Tuzigoot is an ancient pueblo ruin located in Cottonwood. There is another ruin nearby called Montezuma's Castle (a misnomer - no connection to Montezuma). I found them both sweet, majestic, peaceful and visually poetic.  (More "vortex" than in Sedona as far as I'm concerned.)


Inside Tuzigoot


Montezuma's Castle

Our stay here has included numerous road trips to surrounding towns, including Jerome, Prescott and Flagstaff.  All have a bend toward tourism but maintain a sense of their own purposes. Jerome is an old mining town on the mountainside, and Prescott and Flagstaff are college towns.

Spectacular scenery continues to amaze us everywhere we go. I think our favorites here were the Mingus Highway between Cottonwood and Prescott that winds its way over Mingus Mountain, and the Oak Creek Canyon Road north of Sedona.

Slide Rock State Park - A natural water park and this would be the lazy river.

Both are actually 89A.  It, and route 89 are great roads that we've travelled on since up in Montana.  I'd recommend them for sight seeing, but not always for RV travel. They are often turny-twisty passes through mountains and canyons.

It's fall here again for us. We've been following fall south through Montana, Idaho, Utah and Arizona.

Arizona Sycamore

Now we are moving on to Nevada. We'll be in Las Vegas for Thanksgiving. Hope to see one of the Cirque du Soliel shows and visit with some friends there. It certainly won't be like a traditional Thanksgiving, and we'll miss being with friends and family, but that won't interfere with our having a lot to be thankful for.

Thank you Rick!

1 comment:

  1. Love the Sycamore shot. But, I'm not too sure about the one with the "squirrel" in the tree.

    (Just kidding about the squirrel.)

    And, good for you and your sense of spirituality. Spirituality isn't so much about "rituals."


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