Sunday, November 24, 2013

When it floods in the Valley of the Sun. . .

. . .you are reminded that travel doesn’t always go as planned.

Even the best researched and well-thoughtout trips and travels can be derailed by events and circumstances beyond our control.  Take Mother Nature for instance. . .

PicMonkey Collage
Pinnacle Peak - Wednesday on the left, Friday on the right
On Thursday she packed one whale of a punch in this area of Arizona known as “The Valley of the Sun” by dumping rain –  at a record-breaking pace and quantity – in a two day period.  Media reported that 1.7 inches fell as compared to the last record rain of 0.5 inches back in 1973.

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That is steam from the hot tub in the middle of this photo. Chilly? Yes!

It was interesting but after two days, we sun-seekers-from-Seattle were ready for more of those 70- and 80-degree temperatures. The weather reports assure those temps will be back by Tuesday – we’ll be gone by then.

So when it rain dampens your plans you can either sit around counting lemons or make lemonade!  If you find yourself here during inclement weather here are some ‘inside’ tips for ‘making lemonade’ and guaranteed to keep you entertained:

Visit a Museum:

There’s no better place to learn about the art and culture of the American Indians in this area, than the Heard Museums – the original, at 2301 N. Central in Phoenix, or the extension at 32633 N. Scottsdale Road.
There’s also the:
* Phoenix Art Museum,,
*Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMOCA),,
* Musical Instrument Museum,,
* Arizona Museum for Youth,
* Children’s Museum of Phoenix, www.childrensmuseumof

Say SPA-ahhh!

Scottsdale2013 169Every major resort in this valley has some drop-dead, beyond-belief luxurious spa. Even  if you aren’t staying at the resort, you can certainly use the spa. Some offer day passes and others offer extra time in the facility with a treatment.

I can tell you a day spent at the Scottsdale Fairmont Princess spa is so pleasant – for both men and women – it could snow outside and you wouldn’t care!

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The waterfall therapy spa pool is sheltered but outside at Scottsdale's Fairmont Princess 
I took advantage of a discount package at the Four Seasons where we are staying and had a manicure/pedicure that carried me through two hours of pure pampering (I should have waited until the rains came though – I did it on a sunny day last week).

So popular are the area spas, that Scottsdale Tourism offers a down-loadable spa guide at:

Explore Old Town Scottsdale

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Western art lines Old Town Scottsdale

Okay, if its raining you’ll need an umbrella and coat to dash between the galleries, cafes and souvenir shops that line the streets of the old city. But the area is compact. Pick up a walking map and then don’t miss my favorites, the 1933 adobe Mission Church and the olive trees along the route – they were planted back in 1896.  Another favorite -- and a good place to take shelter and spend some time browsing (and buying) books --  is The Poisoned Pen Bookshop, right in the heart of Old Town.

So, which of those ‘inside tips’ did we pursue? None! We spent the morning working out in the resort gym and in the afternoon lit the fireplace, grabbed our books and leisurely did absolutely nothing – another nice option when you travel!

See you back here next week on Foodie Tuesday and again on Travel Photo Thursday! And if you’ve not yet signed up to receive our posts regularly, you can do so right here on the home page,


  1. I like your lemonade make tips. They are amazing

  2. Thanks Jeff! I note that you are new to TravelnWrite, so hope to see you back here again!

  3. Hello Jackie & Joel
    I love your attitude. There is always something to do regardless of the weather and you certainly took advantage by reading and relaxing. It has been a long time since I visited the Heard Museum.. We used go to the Stockyards Restaurant, is it still there?

    Helen xx

  4. Thanks for your visit Helen! And I think you've just provided me a travel tip. I hadn't heard of the Stockyards Restaurant and just did a search and there it is! Celebrating 65 years! I can assure you we will check it out the next time we are there and report on it! Take care - Happy Thanksgiving! Jackie xx

  5. I sure hope it doesn't rain like that when we visit. I do plan to tour Taliesin West when I;m in Scottsdale and I also hear there is a great photography museum - I think at the university.

  6. A new section of the Sonoran McDowell Preserve has opened with 60 miles of hiking and biking trails Leigh - you will definitely need to visit it!

  7. Hi Jackie,

    You sure are 'singin' in the rain'! And why not? Mother Nature is on her own schedule, so, when in her company, you ''when in Rome'! Sounds like you had a lot of fun!

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and Joel!


    1. Thanks for your visit today Poppy. My Google blog is acting up so I don't know if you received the reply I sent to your email comment or not. Hope you are having a sunshine week in Crete!

  8. Your descriptions of rain sound so lovely to me! But I suppose they wouldn't be if you were craving sunshine. :-)

  9. Actually it was nice curling up with a book by the fireplace. . .sometimes just giving yourself permission to do nothing makes for a great vacation. Thanks for stopping by today!! Hugs. J.


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