31 August 2007


The bastards!!! What on earth whould possess someone to drive down a neighborhood street bashing in car windows!!?? I had to be at work by four am this morning and around three fifteen am walked out to this. I had parked my truck on the street in front of the house where I have for two years now with no incident. Someone between 10pm and 3am probably used a bat...bashing in all the automobile windows on my side of the street. Why!!!!????? They could have been inside watching "Don't Forget the Lyrics". I just don't understand this crazy world. Of course it would happen on the eve of a holiday weekend. The soonest anyone can fix it is Tuesday. Until then I have to ride around hoping the cops don't stop me or that it shatters when I hit a bump in the road. Fortunately the tint [and tape] is holding it together.

19 August 2007


This is my 100th post. WOO-HOOOOO!!

In 1540 Francisco Vasquez de Coronado [see my post: CITIES OF GOLD] visited the people of Acoma in search of the seven cities of gold.

The city of Acoma is on a rock formation 367 feet high and 7000 feet above sea level.

Coronado along with 300 Spaniards and 1,000 Mexican Indians, led an assault [like that of Masada] against the Acomans, eventually taking the mesa.

The citizens in 1629 were forced to build the largest adobe/mortar structure in the US; the San Esteban del Rey Mission after an incident with the locals and a friar. That confrontation resulted in the friar being thrown off a cliff.
The city remains inhabited today. You can only reach the mesa by guided tour [$12] but is WELL worth it. There is also a $10 per camera fee.

If you find yourself travelling along Interstate 40 YOU MUST STOP AND VISIT THIS AMAZING PLACE!!

The city is open to guests on Setember 2 to celebrate the autumn festival. As many as 18,000 people attend. This is a very cool event as tourists are invited into homes of the locals AND THEY FEED YOU!!!! WOO HOO!!!

By all accounts I have heard so far, Stonehenge is not as impressive or massive as you might expect from pictures. The 'Stonehenge of the Southwest' however is soooo friggin awesome. Before you get to the site, you drive about 30 minutes off the freeway in essentially flat land. As you make this one curve however you realize you are on a cliff that over looks the valley and these monoliths. From the distance they are very imposing.

Once you get past the Stonehenge of the Southwest you will find yourself at the Cultural Center. Here you can pay for the tour and camera permit which you must have BEFORE taking any pictures. You can also visit the museum or have some lunch [$7 for a roast beef wrap!!!]

Unfortunately you are not allowed to take pictures inside the church or of the cemetary.

Before the Spanish came, Acoman homes did not have a door. You could only enter from the roof, which is the way traditional 'kiva's' are designed.
...a true 'brownstone'

At the end of the tour you are asked if you want to take the shuttle or the 'rock trail' back to the visitor's center. A group of us chose the 'rock trail'. What we were not told was how steep it was. You are literally scaling the face of a cliff. This use to be the only way up to the mesa until a movie company built a road in exchange for filming a movie at the top. It starts out rather simple, some stone steps but then you make a turn and WOWOWOW you are greeted by quite a view -- and no hand rails, no rope, no nuttin'!!

A young woman in front of me huggin the walls said, "you can go ahead of me if you want" and I said, "believe me...I'M IN NO HURRY....you take your time!!"
There are grooves in the rock face to hold on to but that is it. Yikes!!! But it WAS coooooool.

I'm out.

Sherman, set the way-back machine to 1540.

I had the opportunity today to go to a rodeo or go back in time to a city in the clouds. Which one do you think I chose. Here's a sneak peek.

Francisco Vaques de Coronado's army visited Acoma in the year 1540 and became the first white man to enter Sky City.

He described Acoma as:

"One of the strongest ever seen, because the city was built on a high rock. The ascent was so difficult that we repented climbing to the top. The houses are three and four stories high. The people are of the same type as those in the province of Cibola (Zuni) and they have abundant supplies of maize, beans and turkeys like those of New Spain. (Minge 1976:4)

10 August 2007

I N V A S I O N ?


...Transformers -- palm trees in diguise!!!!

PV approves cell tower disguised as palm tree:

Diana BalazsThe Arizona RepublicJul. 25, 2007

PARADISE VALLEY - The Paradise Valley Planning Commission has approved the installation of the town's first cellphone tower disguised as a palm tree.But the tower at El Chorro Lodge, 5550 E. Lincoln Drive, would not be just any faux foliage. The commission stipulated Tuesday that T-Mobile install the very best-looking man-made tree on the market and enhance its looks by planting two real palms next to it, complete with a drip irrigation system.

And not just any palms. They must be date palms to match the fake tree known as a monopalm, and they must be 25 feet tall. The tower tree will stand at 45 feet. The real palms must be lower in height so they won't interfere with the tower's signal. Fake fronds will hide the antenna array.Unless the commission's decision is appealed, the matter will not have to go before the Town Council. The tower will be installed in a service area on the grounds of El Chorro, one of Paradise Valley's oldest watering holes.An 8-foot tall block wall will hide the tower's equipment cabinets. "We've obviously seen a lot of pictures of monopalms. Some of them look pretty good and some of them look pretty not so good. I suppose our goal is to make sure we get the best-looking monopalm on the face of the Earth," said Richard Mahrle, commission chairman. T-Mobile said the tropical-looking tower will significantly improve service from Invergordon Road to the east, McDonald Drive to the south, Mummy Mountain to the north, and Desert Fairways Drive to the west. T-Mobile already has received approval for a tower at the town's public works building at Invergordon Road (64th Street) and Lincoln. It provided maps showing T-Mobile's existing coverage area and those of the public works and El Chorro sites. When installed, both will greatly improve reception and customer capacity along the Lincoln Drive corridor.

There was no opposition to the request.

Klatuu Barada Nikto !!!!

09 August 2007


Just minutes north of Albuquerque (off of I-25, exit 242) in Bernalillo, is Coronado State Monument where Francisco Vásquez de Coronado—with 300 soldiers and 800 Indian allies from New Spain—entered the valley while looking for the fabled Seven Cities of Gold. Instead he found villages inhabited by prosperous native people. Coronado's party camped near the Tiwa pueblo of Kuaua, one of the many villages encountered by the explorers.

The ladder leads down into a 'kiva' where ceremonies were held. You are not allowed to take pictures there because of the religious significance. Too bad...there are some amazing murals on the walls.

...a fixer-upper...