Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Phoenix, Arizona

Went to Phoenix for the first time for our niece Amanda's wonderful wedding to Josh- it was beautiful! All the family, all the joy of a wedding- we are both glad we went!  But as we had never been to Phoenix or Arizona, we wanted to see some of the state. Both Rich and I had places on our bucket lists, different places (LOL), but places:-).  On different blog pages, we will discuss the two other areas of Arizona we explored.

But Phoenix needed some exploring.  As we know nothing about it, we Googled it: 4 1/2 million people:-(.  Know what that means?  Traffic, and lots of it.   The slightest task required planning around traffic- and it never worked.  Even leaving the city for Tombstone took 2 more hours because of traffic- out of the city:-(.  So if you plan to go, just know the traffic is formidable, and always wins.

Nonetheless, we saw a couple places worth seeing:  the Botanical Gardens and the State   Capitol building.  There are many other places worth seeing, we just didn't have the time, this time:-)  But Arizona is totally worth more exploring!!!

The Botanical Gardens (https://www.dbg.org/) are beautifully set up in a well planned format according to plant types.  The walkways are nice and well decorated in garden things.  It is a bit pricey at $25 per person, but there is a $1 senior discount and coupons are all around town, and they are cumulative!  The gardens even have a butterfly house!!  And it is pretty large- we thought a couple hours, and ended up there for 4 hours, and didn't finish seeing everything.

The entrance!

Huge cactus

Desert flowers- really incredible this year!

Spikes- yikes!

Butterfly on flower- it is small and blends in, but so pretty!

Then there are the big butterflies!  Sadly,we weren't allowed to touch them or let them land on us.  

Cody and Rich loving the butterflies!

Rich giving an omage to the symbol of the cactus:-)  You must guess:-)

Barrel cactus

Saguaro cactus everywhere!

Octopus cactus!

More flowers

See the joy on our faces:-)

The state capitol (http://www.maintour.com/arizona/phx_state_capitol.htm)  of Arizona and the surrounding park is something everyone should see if you are in Phoenix.  The dome is made of copper, the major mineral mined in the state. Although this capitol is now a museum and not the home of the state government (that is in the buildings behind and aside the capitol)  it is well worth a visit for the history.  For example, who knew that there was a movement to add both Arizona and New Mexico to the Union, with the plan to separate them at a later time.  This caused "riots" and protests in Arizona.  Not sure what the reaction in NM was, but I suspect it was similar considering how different the states are.

Who are those sexy women photobombing this monument:-)

The dome and angel

Rich at the entry

The state seal

The surrounding park is filled with memorials to our fallen.  A major monument is to the USS Arizona.  There is a placard with the name of every sailor on the Arizona hung on the monument which resembles the ribs of a ship.

The USS Arizona memorial

The USS Arizona Memorial

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