I have been to Phoenix many, many, times over the past 15 years; this would be first visit as a tourist. My cousin Karen and her hubby Tom were winter refugees and had been in Mesa, AZ since the first of the year. They were nice enough to host us for a couple of days.
We blew into Mesa shortly after the noon hour; we quickly rounded up family and then headed to the Phoenix Botanical Garden. We were on a mission–see as much as possible–in a short time period; and if possible introduce Karen to some new places. Unfortunately we arrived at the Garden 20 minutes before a private party was being set-up. Not to be undone some quick talking convinced the ticket office to let us in for nothing–nada–that’s correct for free! We proceeded to dash around the Garden like silly adolescents giggling and laughing as we shot way too many candid photos.
Our next stop was the Phoenix Art Museum which had a nice assortment of ancient and contemporary art on display. And once again Dame Fortune was looking after us–our visit–happened to be on a free day. Can you believe it–a two for one–you gotta love getting such deals! Here are examples of the museum’s collection:
The next day was as fast paced as the first. We began with a visit to the Phoenix Zoo. Visiting zoos is one of our time honored traditions whenever and wherever we travel. Going to a zoo stimulates the senses; the manner to which the animals are treated reflects the values that that particular community places on culture and education. This was our second visit to a desert zoo — we had previously visited the Los Angeles Zoo a few years ago. Desert zoos are not a lush and green as other zoos. However, the Phoenix Zoo did look like a botanical garden for desert plants in addition to being a wonderful menagerie. The weather cooperated and so most of the animals were out and about. We saw a variety of animals that thrive in warmer climes:
We enjoyed our time with my cousin and her hubby. Back home we often only see each for special occasions–the holidays, weddings and the like. This visit was all about us! The following photos show we did have a little bit of fun–these were taken at the Mesa Art Center: