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  • Gerald Tindal

Day 73: Contrasts


KT Man,


The desert has been a bit of solace. Such harsh land with mostly rocks and then more rocks. Papago Park is almost as we left it, though the golf course has expanded with some of the park converted to greens and fairways. Such a strange contrast. Brown rocks of various sizes from monster boulders the size of a five story building, crumbled from the mountain surround, to the small kind that end up in your shoe. Next to well-watered greens for well-heeled golfers.


Papago Park is solace: all 1500 acres once the home for the Hohokam. The sandstone so destined to weather. Hole-in-the-rock: a place to stand in the orbit opening. A tomb in honor of a governor many times elected leaving a strange white pyramid over ponds with palm trees. Fishing in the desert: bass, sunfish, catfish. Next to a zoo with giraffes, and lions. Mountain goats perched atop one of the building boulders: the vertical ascent crazy for climbing with such little hoofs. A moat trail north to the Desert Botanical Garden with thousands of species of agave and cactus. The desert revealed in a compressed space tightly exhibited.


The day was sun. All sun and movement designed for respite. Trail walks that you normally wouldn’t enjoy so much. Remembering you. The same contrast of the brown rock and green fairways. Desert with ponds and palm trees. Giraffes, lions and mountain goats. The park, once a prisoner of war camp: the land of milk and honey for U-boat crew inmates. Next to a garden in desert full bloom. These contrasts accessible by connecting trails.


Buddy: The days remain long and we seek solace from being somewhere you wouldn’t normally travel. Be in a different place without you and thinking of you. The desert such a contrast to our rain forest yard in Eugene with your paver patios and decks.


One day, the harsh dull hammer of sadness will be replaced by your bright smile and memories of you with us, much like the sun in the desert. One day, we hope to accept the contrast between your death and your life.


We love you and will seek you out again today in the desert.


JT Man


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