Friday, January 28, 2011

Tohono Chul and Thrift Stores

Another fine, sunny day in Tucson.  After a discussion about social media and the power of blogging, we sped off to our first stop; the Tohono Chul Park.  This desert preserve is north of Tucson in the older section of Tucson.  We were all excited about the photo op treat in store for us on the drive out there.  On the way there were some very nice "low slung" adobe looking homes on the rolling foothills.  It was quite pleasing to the eye to see how well they fit in to the landscape.

Once at the park we hit the ground running.  If you can picture someone dumping a bucket of marbles out on a smooth floor you have a great visual for what happened after we all passed through the entry turnstile.  Everyone was out of site within a minute!  Although we ran into each other at different points, all of us were focused on exploring, enjoying the fine sunny day in a lovely setting AND getting some great photos.

I was especially wrapped up in the wide range of light I saw through my lens.  In this one, the light is softened as it comes through the translucent peeling bark on this tree.

Then, I got wrapped up in shadows and strong geometrics.

The fence and its shadow.

Looking up through the "roof" of one of the shelters.

I believe this is a Century Cactus.  Reminds me of Jaws.

In several of the shady areas, there were remnants of cactus making their way back into the garden's food chain.

As I was taking this picture of one of the Saguaro cactus, one of the park's docents walked by, looked up and said in a surprised tone "Oh, look, he's growing arms!".

 Another of the docents had an exhibit with specimens of the various wildlife that inhabits the desert.  She had bugs of all sizes in lucite and a turtle shell. She also had something I had never seen.  They are called scutes and they have patterns of concentric rings that like tree rings can be used to determine the age of the turtle.  Here is a close up of one.

At the left edge of the picture above was a hollow turtle shell.  It made a great frame for a picture of Kathi.

Next I had some fun with the Organ Pipe cacti.  This is looking down on a little one.  So pretty and yet so dangerous looking.

And nestled amongst all the big ones, I noticed a baby sprouting up through the gravel.

I was listening to one of the docents as I happened to look down and noticed this cactus.   Not only is the light and shadow interesting, but you can see a reptile like pattern running up some of the leaves.  These were created by the inner layer of spines/leaves being pressed against the next layer's edges.  You can see that not only do they have nasty looking spines, the edges are scalloped causing the pattern.

One more cactus shot.  I reget I don't remember the name of this one.  It has such a lovely color to it.

On the way back to Kate's for another fantastic lunch, we hit the best little Goodwill in Tucson.  I found a perfectly smashing pair of faux snake skin pants that I think will add interest to one of my handmade purses that I will make in the future.  Interesting thing is that they fit me.  Perhaps I will loan them to Merle when she goes bar-hopping with Andrew tomorrow night!  The're long enough Merle!

After lunch we worked on our blogs before going out to Savers.  Kate had a definite gleam in her eye at the onset of that trip.  I decided to have some fun with looking at things from a different perspective.   I was impressed with how clean the floors were.  I had one of the customers do a double take while I took the first picture.

We're visiting the Gem Shows tomorrow.  Several in the group are apprehensive as they have heard how overwhelming it will be.  With Kate and Andrew at the helm, I'm sure it will be a blast.


  1. I love being able to see the day through your eyes. You captured things I did not notice even though we were on the same journey. And you've done a beautiful job presenting them.

    Looking forward to another beautiful day.

  2. You've taken some awesome photographs and I love the words that go with them. I also like the fact that you were willing to explore all the angles, looking from below and above to see EVERYTHING. Sometimes the tiny things, the little things that go unnoticed, are the most magical. You've certainly captured magic here in the Savers down the road.

  3. P.S. Those snake-skin pants look mighty fine on you!