Sara and I used to rely heavily on serendipity to tell us what to do. For instance we once let a packet of toothbrush heads decide whether we should stay together. Alright, so it didn’t always work, but it was better than my congenital indecisiveness. Probably.
Anyway, today serendipity took me to a place called Sedona, and she certainly knew what she was doing. Wow! Coo! It genuinely took my breath away, it was so beautiful. The town itself is touristy and commercial – a hippie town like Glastonbury, only cleaner and bright red. But the creeks and canyons are spectacular. There’s a world class view every hundred yards. If only I’d watched a few more westerns I’d know my way around. More about Sedona and enirons tomorrow.
For now I’m camped at Beaver Creek campground. You’re allowed to camp in the wild wherever you like in the Coconino National Forest (except near to Sedona itself, which looks like a termite mound with all those tourists teeming over it), but for my first experience of camping in America I thought I’d better try an official campground. The mountain lions and bears can wait for next time. It’s $15 per night, which is a lot better than a motel, and the view is SO much better than the back of Burger King. My tent is pitched on a bluff overlooking the creek, and I’m looking forward to this evening. At the moment it’s 75 degrees, the sky is blue and the earth is red, as are most of my clothes – it’s a bit like camping on Mars.
The time passes wonderfully slowly in a tent (even slower since I just learned that Arizona doesn’t use daylight saving time, so it’s actually an hour earlier than I thought). Unfortunately my thoughts have slowed down too, but there is a lot to be said for sitting on a riverbank watching the wildlife when you need to get your neurons to settle back into place. It’s very tranquil.
Anyhow, I’ll have to send you this from a coffee shop and I need to eat and get back before nightfall, so I’ll post some better photos tomorrow. I haven’t camped under the stars since I was a kid – I’m looking forward to it.
Today’s sensations: Sunburn. Eyes welling up from the beauty of the landscape. A tiny amount of apprehension about sleeping rough in the middle of nowhere, armed only with a torch and a box of doughnuts.