Ever want to just get away and feel inner peace? Well, on my recent trip to Arizona, I found that on the buttes of Papago Park. Feel the peace.
Papago Park is one of those places that is right in the middle of the Phoenix metropolis. It is right next to the Phoenix Zoo and the Desert Botanical Gardens. One would think it would feel congested and right in the thick of it, but surprisingly, I felt a calm that I had not felt since my trip to the Grand Canyon the year before.
Walking the various trails of Papago Park, I was able to see the park in all its beauty. It didn’t hurt that the sun was out in full force that day, with few clouds to stifle the amazing colors of the red rocks and desert foliage. In the distance, you could see the gleaming pyramid-shaped tomb of Arizona’s first Governor, George W.P. Hunt.
One other cool thing that made the day special (though it broke the solitude of the moment) was the contrails of the planes entering and exiting Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport. You could almost set your watch by them, about once per minute. After a while, the sky was full of the colorful streaks.
In times like these where stress is around every corner, we all need places that we can go to where we can completely tune out and unwind. For me, Papago Park is one of those places. Sadly, it is also about 2,000 miles West of me right now.
Tim Pawlak (aka 110isnotdead) is a librarian, writer, photographer, storyteller and amateur historian (gotta use that History Degree somewhere). Massillon, Ohio (about an hour south of Cleveland) is where he calls home.