Instead Of…….

February 22, 2023, Patagonia, AZ- No matter what one does in this life, there will always be someone who thinks something else should have been done, instead.

I’ve heard suggestions, albeit gentle, that:

Instead of being in southern Arizona right now, I should be back in Prescott, preparing to set up a storm shelter.

Instead of setting up a storm shelter, I should be helping out in understaffed schools.

Instead of doing my “own thing”, I should be checking with those who could really use my assistance, back at Home Base.

I’m not being singled out, by any means. The President, no matter who he (and someday, she) is has more suggestions as to how to do the job, than just about anyone on the planet. Witness how the zero sum crowd equates the current president’s visit to Kiyyiv with unconcern for East Liverpool, or for the Mexican border. Anyone else in a leadership role has similar experiences.

There is another type of “Instead of”. That is when a planned activity is a victim to changing circumstances, and being graceful calls for other activities to take its place.

Thus, on this journey, the ferocious winds and rain that came here, this morning, nixed a hike to the border, in Coronado National Monument. Instead, I came upon San Pedro House, about eight miles north of Sierra Vista, where I spent last night. A delightful, if less taxing, hike in a loop from the small house to the San Pedro River and back, about 1.5 miles, replaced the planned activity. The winds were not as fierce as they were further south and I got to pay homage to one of the last free-flowing rivers in the Southwest.

Here are a few scenes from the privately conserved area.

San Pedro House, Cochise County
San Pedro River, between Sierra Vista and Bisbee.
Willow and Cottonwood, San Pedro Interpretive Trail
San Pedro River, assuming a channel-like flow.
Green Kingfisher Pond, fed by the San Pedro.
Wind-whipped grass, San Pedro Interpretive Trail.
Wooden water bin, near San Pedro House.
Children once played in this cabin, under the live oak.
Secured utility pole, leaning from the high winds, Old Town Bisbee.

After leaving San Pedro House, I headed to Bisbee, hoping to take lunch at High Desert Market and Cafe. It was closed today, so instead I found Le Cornucopia Cafe, just across the street from this temporarily concerning scene, of a tottering utility pole which, as one onlooker put it, could have set all Old Bisbee on fire, had it toppled and set the wires to sparking. The situation was handled swiftly and well. As for Le Cornucopia, their curried lentil soup filled the simple lunch bill very nicely.

Finally, as the wind was still pretty intense and a mix of rain and snow was falling, as evening approached, I came into this old mining town, in northern Santa Cruz County-an area of Arizona that I had not visited previously. Sonoita and Patagonia are picturesque, with the latter having a charming “Old West” hotel. So, here I am at Stage Stop Inn, for the night.

Stage Stop Inn, Patagonia

It always pays to follow the heart. The Universe has yet to steer me wrong.

8 thoughts on “Instead Of…….

  1. Always remember that the “instead of’s” are somebody else’s idea of what you “should” be doing. If you are in an activity with others, there may be a supervisor who makes decisions; otherwise, your activities are your choice, your own decision, within any commitments you may have made. These photos show a choice that is very much “you,” and provided a delightful diversion from a tough situation.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I was told, by one of my critics this morning, that if I was done “doing (my) thing” tomorrow, that my help could be used. I see very clearly that some people’s sense of mission leads them to denigrate anything that does not directly connect with said mission.

      Liked by 1 person

      • As time goes on, you may find it appropriate to select a smaller number of causes for which you will provide assistance, prioritizing “your thing,” and assisting only within that smaller universe. It’s not necessary for one person (you) to take on the rest of the world , and it’s every bit as rewarding (or moreso) to assist oneor two favorite causes!

        Liked by 1 person

      • As it stands, I am active in one fairly demanding ’cause”-the Red Cross and one very understanding group-Prescott Farmer’s Market/Slow Food Prescott. RC has a meeting next Thursday, and I will be there to let the Nervous Nellies know what I will and will not tolerate, going forward.


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