April 1, 2017, Superior, AZ- I returned, briefly, to this roughly beautiful little town, at the edge of central Arizona’s Queen Creek Gorge, to partake of the Gorge’s eastern flank, popularly known as Devil’s Canyon, (I prefer “Spirit Canyon”), and a sandwich, coffee and butterscotch brownie prepared by a friend, Kathy, at Sun Flour Market.
She and the market’s owner, Willa, are prime examples of people who make everyone entering their enterprise feel genuinely welcome, like royalty. They work hard, as well, and their efforts show: The place was hopping, despite the relatively quiet Main Street.
I don’t take photographs of people at work, or of random customers, but these are scenes from Sun Flour’s interior, including Willa’s Easter Tree.
I have spoken before, of places where I feel safe. This establishment is another such place. I consider the ladies as friends, who love their spouses, AND have intensely caring hearts, when it comes to people in general. The Easter Tree is a nod to the children, whose parents bring them in, regularly, on Saturdays. You might note some Easter dresses, to the left of the tree. While I was there, a little girl talked her parents into buying one of the dresses. Needless to say, Sun Flour Market will see me, whenever I’m in the area.
I mention imposture, in the title, as well. I pondered, a great deal, whilst hiking in the canyon, after lunch, as to my own state of being. Friends will say that I am a genuine soul, and I am honoured by that. There are plenty of others, including several family members, who would say otherwise, and I have to live with that. My own personal jury is still out, on the matter.
Most such self-ambivalence stems from work. Going back to when I first entered the workforce, there were supervisors, like Phil Mitchell, Bob Powers and Sgt. Dave Cummings (United States Army), who saw my rough edges and used whatever sand paper they had available, to turn me into a fairly decent worker. Fast forward to the late seventies and early eighties, men like Peter Webb, Dr. Mike Duff, and the late Patrick Giovanditto also helped me hone my skills, often ignoring objections from less compassionate supervisors. My colleagues at Jeju National University, in Korea, were uniformly supportive of my work, during the five years I served as a trainer of English teachers. Back in the States, in the 1990’s, I got support and encouragement from Eugene Charley and A.T. Sinquah, whilst serving as a school counselor. Truth be known, many students, teachers and parents also believed in my abilities- far more than I believed in myself. The people with whom I worked last Spring, at Prescott High School, remain advocates, as well. These were the people who could see inside my heart.
The people I mentioned above are counteracted, to a great degree, by the majority of those under whom I have worked, including my current supervisors. Their negative opinions, unfortunately, only bring me back to a state of doubt. None of them have been able to see inside my heart. My own vision, often cloudy, requires constant cleansing and refocusing. All I know is that the safe zones in my world are what make such recovery possible. Perhaps some day, my work place will be a similar place. For the next eight weeks, though, I do the best I can, with six of my eight students as beacons of light.