Sunday, May 18, 2014

Good vibrations in Sedona, Arizona

                                          A backseat view of my sister JoJo blissing out
                                           in the front seat as we drive through Sedona

      For years I've heard snippets about Sedona -- words like "magical, mystical and spiritual" are common descriptors. Since I've never been there, I was pretty excited when my step-mom Michele arranged a women's long weekend there, just for the ladies in her life. Count me in!

      My sister JoJo and I were sort of awestruck as we drove into the outskirts of town. She had never been there either -- our jaws dropped as the gorgeous majesty of the place slowly came into view.

                                                     We kept muttering "Oh my God..."

                                      My sisters JoAnna, Laura and Kirsten wasted no
                                                 time getting comfortable and having fun!

                                      Catching up in the infinity pool. Everyone's so busy
                            and geographically separated these days, so we were grateful
                                             for the time to just relax and hang out together

                         The first night, we walked up to a nearby "vortex" to watch the sunset

                      The Sedona tourism website says that Sedona has several "vortices" --
                             areas where there is a concentration of positive energy
                          conducive to spiritual experiences. I tried to do some research on
                        the subject, but the science appears to be a tad lacking. But does this
                                                    mean it isn't real? Who knows?

                                                 A marker points the way to the vortex

                         Well, I don't know about the vortex, but the views were spectacular

                                                         We were definitely feeling it...

                                                  "X" marks the vortex spot

                                                 Laura displays her magnificent rack   ;-)

               The next morning dawned with unspeakable splendor. Michele spared
   no expense with the home she rented for us. We had the best view in all of Sedona!

                  We headed into town to do some sightseeing. This "Aligning Light Center"
             is typical of the businesses and organizations sprinkled through the little village.

                                  Some claim aliens are drawn to Sedona because of the vortices...
                               or maybe it's that the aliens were here FIRST, and THEY planted
                                                     the vortices...I can't keep it all straight.

                                                                To the north of town

                                                                  A Sedona front yard

                            How do you like the view from the place we ate lunch?

                                                 ...or the view out the window of this bar?

                             Most of the gift shops featured fare related to crystals, rocks,
                                      gems, etc...implying that they had special powers

                                              Does a "crystal" emery board file my nails more
                                                  mystically than a conventional one?

                                         Several of my family members bought Sedona rocks
                                                  and crystals from the shops in town

                                     This card with the moonstone rock purchased by one
                          of my sisters describes the powers that they claim the rock emits

                               Three women in our group sat in this room for a psychic reading

                                                                   Sightseeing is tiring

                        There is a 100 year old sycamore grove right in the middle of town

                                                              The view south of town

                                                                             The main drag

                                                       West of town

                                                              rock and sky

                                                     The view to the east

                                                           blooming cacti

                                          Back at the house, we fell into gender stereotypes        
                                                       and did each other's hair...   :-)

                                  We went out to dinner at a charming Mexican restaurant

                                After dinner, it was back to the house to crank up the iPod
                               for some music, dancing,  and yes...drumming! This was
                           Michele's wish, so we couldn't very well not go along, right?

                                              Insert Shania's "Man, I Feel Like a Woman!" here

                                                               Everyone took part

                                          How about a little B-52's "Love Shack?"

                                                 Some couldn't dance as well as others,
                                                      but a fine time was had by all

                                            How about a little Pharrell Williams "Happy?"

                    And of course we had to include Sister Sledge's "We Are Family"

                   You know, there's something freeing about not having any boys around...

                         ...we found ourselves surprisingly uninhibited, being just us girls...

                              Was it the power of the vortex? Or maybe the peach vodka of which
                               many of us were partaking? The power of music? The fact that we're
                               all a bunch of goofballs? Or maybe it was our actual love and affection
                                                           for one another? Who knows?

                                           Anyway, it's a good thing we already did the swimming
                                         in the pool thing,  and the sightseeing thing, because the
                                                               next morning, a storm blew in...


             Since it was snowing outside, and all of us girls were stuck inside for the day,
                 obviously the next indicated step was to cuddle up in the living room and...

                                "Bridesmaids," of course!    (image: Fandango)

                                                             The blustery view out the window

                                                                Spectacular Sedona sunset

                        And just like that, the weekend was over. A gigantic hug and kiss to
                          Michele for bringing us all together and giving us an experience none
                                                       of us could ever forget. XOXO

                    So, what to make of my experience here? Are the vortices for real?
                                                     The crystals? I don't know.
                        There are also many conventional Christian churches in town. 

                     All I can say for sure is, spiritual feelings ARE evoked by being here. 
                                         Everyone who looks up FEELS something. 

                          For myself, as much as I love science and figuring out why things are, 
                        spirituality is one of those things that are maybe better off left unexplained. 

                                   Does God exist? What happens when we die? 

                                                  I don't know. 

                                    But I do know that if try to live my life as IF God exists, 
                                                   then things tend to go well. 

                                                        Beyond that...why ask why?