Utah to Arizona #11, The Christmas Trip To Sign For The House

A palm tree at the hotel in Phoenix.

A palm tree at the hotel in Phoenix.

Last week we put 2200 miles on the car, signed a ream of paper, had a tussle with the US Postal Service, visited with my mother, bought a new house, had a quiet, special Christmas, saw a production of Annie, and managed to see more of Arizona.

The builder and money people decided to make us have an inspection on December 20th. The other preset appointment on the following Thursday, which was after Christmas, meant we were in Arizona for the week before we could take house possession. So we played.

First stop was Florence, Arizona. A sleepy, rural burg where the industry they are most proud of is prisons(!!), so we went to their winery instead for a wine tasting. I’d show you a picture of the bottle of wine I bought, but it’s finished and I forgot take a picture because this keeping up with blog photo demands is new and a bit inhibiting to my usual hide the evidence approach to life.

On the way to Tucson we stopped at a Greek Orthodox Monastery in the middle of what

One of seven churches on the monastery grounds.

One of seven churches on the monastery grounds.

would appear to many people as Nowhere. I was provided a skirt to pull over my pants and a head cover. We were then given several instructions that all started with “Do not…” but ended with, “Have an enjoyable time.” The monastery was only started in 1995 and they have made it a beautiful oasis of quiet.

We went to several tourist attractions in Tucson over a day and a half, but one of the more interesting, besides the original fort, was the DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun. Ted DeGrazia was an

DeGrazia's home and studio.

DeGrazia’s home and studio.

artist during the last century who built a private and quirky home and studio. He studied under Diego Rivera at the Taller de Grafica Popular which reminded me of my friend, Susan Vogel’s book, Becoming Pablo O’Higginswww.amazon.com/Becoming-Pablo-Ohiggins-Susan-Vogel/dp/1930074212 O’Higgins was a Utah boy who also studied under Rivera and became a well-known and respected Mexican muralist.

We hurried through Tombstone and ended up in Bisbee, Arizona, an odd little enclave of

Our living room at the Bisbee Grand Hotel.

Our living room at the Bisbee Grand Hotel.

artists escaping the fast life, copper miners, left-over or re-emerging hippies, and Exceedingly Helpful People. On the surface they appear to live in peace together, a most appreciated message on December 24.

Our hotel room was surely not to be repeated as the pictures show. It was this day we were told we needed to get originally signed final papers to release the money to our bank in Salt Lake City.

The bedroom at the Bisbee Grand Hotel!

The bedroom at the Bisbee Grand Hotel!

Exceedingly Helpful People let us use a printer, produced a notary public, and ushered us the postal service’s overnight service.

We drove to Sun City for Christmas to be with my mother hoping our last minute glitch would be solved. The holiday was quiet and well-spent.

The papers did not arrive in Salt Lake City on

A table decoration at the Bisbee Grand I wanted to name, but couldn't think of anything appropriate.

A table decoration at the Bisbee Grand I wanted to name, but couldn’t think of anything appropriate.

the 26th. So, Diligent, Forceful Sam got on the telephone and talked to: The US Postal Service, Two People in the Salt Lake Bank, The Builders, The Salesman, Our Realtor, The Security Company People. At least twice. Mother and I went shopping. That night we all went to Annie at a dinner theatre.

When the sun rose on the 27th the first thing I heard was Diligent, Forceful Sam on the phone with the US Postal Service, Two People in the Salt Lake Bank, The Builders, The Salesman, Our Realtor, The Security Company People. I went outside to pick grapefruit and lemons off Mother’s trees. By noon we packed up our stuff and headed toward where we needed to be for signing last papers and pick up house keys if all fell into place. The papers were received at the bank at 12:05, the money was wired at about 3:10, the money people recorded it before 4:00, and we were called at 4:03 to pick up the keys. The only other time I’ve ever dealt with wired money was when Sam and I were stranded in Mexico and our dear daughter-in-law wired us bail money, but that’s another story, and really it wasn’t bail money exactly.

The Arizona house now waiting for us to move into it.

The Arizona house now waiting for us to move into it.

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26 Responses to Utah to Arizona #11, The Christmas Trip To Sign For The House

  1. I have relatives in AZ. I think it’s beautiful, but I’m not too sure I feel safe there. The state govt. has its own ideas about things I can’t really support.

  2. I agree with you on both counts. You probably live in a sane place, but I now live in Utah that is just as crazy and cruel in state government. I wish there was an easy answer about why I continue to live around it, though it has made me learn.

  3. I don’t know if it’s any better, Cali is crazy in different ways like how hard it is to have a small business!

  4. I would say that you two did an anful lot of moving and shaking in a a very short time. Your new house is a nice one but I still don’t know how, personally I could leave so much beauty behind. But maybe there are compensations if you can get to a willife area in a very short time and be able to, as they say, “convene with nature.”

    But one more thought- you have moved to a very radical right wing political atmosphere and that would be hard for me stomach if it were me. You haven’t been able to move away from what I call noise and it is really loud in some states .

    • Yes, I am leaving the beauty of this home and Utah behind. Utah’s been my life since I was seven, and while there is much to miss (friends especially), I am not moving to an any more politically weird state–truly. Utah is an unsung hero for theocracies. Did you know Utah has a state gun? It’s the Browning M1911 automatic pistol, and it’s far more popular than the state flower. Plus, it really is true there is polygamy here, some of the hardest laws on immigrants, the lowest per capita spending on education, legislative refusal to make hate crimes against gays illegal, and well, there is more but why go on? Maybe I’ll be surprised in Arizona over politics, but I doubt it. One thing I have noticed about Arizona is they have more respect for Native Americans than Utah does. But, all in all, I agree with you and maybe inside I really do wish (hope) Arizona is better and I’m a teensy bit worried.

      • No, I had no idea that Utah has a state gun. That really is over the top. Wonder if some other crazy states have one as well. I still can not believe the plight of the American Indian. It is so morally and humanely wrong. One would think the U.S. is “better” than this but our country is sorely lacking in treating minorities equally. I’ve read some things about Arizona and I think the immigration thing is one big blight upon the state and the laws that have been passed regarding immigrants. But I only know you through your writings and you come across as a genuine and compassionate person. I only hope that you can easily find others who are like mined. You will adjust but I am sure there will be some frustrations as I’m sure that any move would entail. I write as if I have moved a few times but the truth is that I have lived in my home for more than 40 years and I hate change. Here’s wishing you and all those you love a wonderful New Year.

      • I agree with your politics, Yvonne. I’m a bit stressed out and worried about what all this means to move. I’ve got friends here I know I’m going to miss. I already do. Thanks for the wishes, and a happy, wonderful New Year to you as well.

  5. Sue Martin says:

    It’s a lovely house! Congratulations on surviving all the aggravation!

  6. Denise Hisey says:

    After reading this post, I need a nap! I’m exhausted! ;-)
    Congrats on the new house!

  7. Arizona is a beautiful state, regardless of politics. Think Grand Canyon, Sedona, Organ Pipe, Flagstaff and many, many other areas. Also think two more reasonable votes. (grin) Thanks for stopping by my blogs on Burning Man.

  8. petit4chocolatier says:

    Best wishes and a happy new year in your new home :)

  9. Ignore the politics and enjoy the beauty of Arizona. I’d bet the light there is gorgeous … as it is in Santa Fe. The bare mountains are dramatic too. Any move is an adventure. Have fun. :-)

  10. I love the synchronicity of your house being ready to move into right on time for the new year – that has to be a ‘welcoming’ omen! From someone who’s moved (some would say “way too often”) from county to country, I can imagine all the emotions you’ll be experiencing right now. Remember to make it an adventure, not a recreation of what your lives used to be – that’s the only advice I can give you, and remember why it was you chose Arizona in the first place. Oh, and hey: good luck!

  11. Gypsy Bev says:

    Everywhere you go, you can find beauty if you look carefully around you. Always look for the places that make you feel happy inside and try to spend as much time as possible in these areas. Being from Ohio, the mountains of Utah and Arizona are so beautiful to me. One of my favorite places to wander as I slip off to sleep is through the spires of Bryce Canyon. Be happy!

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