Greetings from Phoenix, land of sunshine and strip malls! And many, many pieces of tourquoise jewelry. Mom and I arrived here today, having gotten up at an ungodly hour for the airborne cattle drive that is flying Southwest, because we are baseball fans, and we are here to get our first look at the 2007 A's who, along with about a third of the MLB teams, have their Spring Training here. (The rest are in Florida, due to unknown forces that cause baseball teams and old people to co-localize in the winter.)
We don't have tickets to a game until tomorrow so, since we got here too early to check into our hotel (in Chandler), we made our way to Scottsdale, where there was a place listed in Roadfood and (we thought) the good shopping was supposed to be. Lunch was great, at a real old-time ice cream parlor with quilted pink booths and grilled American cheese sandwiches on the menu. In purely objective terms, the sandwich may or may not have been good. I am not qualified to judge because it was so perfectly like the grilled cheese sandwich (with potato chips and a pickle spear) that was my favorite thing to eat at Ortman's (on Solano, where the Starbucks is now). That there were hot fudge sundaes for dessert should really go without saying.
Shopping, on the other hand, was slightly less successful. This was probably our fault. After all, are the good shopkeepers of Scottsdale really to be blamed if we were not interested large pieces of silver jewelry, Mexican-style home accessories, bronze horse sculptures or lifesized, plastic Native Americans? Of course not.
But all is not lost. As soon as Mom gets done impersonating an office (they just opened the bids for building the new treatment plant) we're going to go to the outlet mall across the street, where we may be more appropriate.