I've complained a lot about Arizona over the years, comparing it to the place where I spent many of my summers growing up. Tennessee is beautiful with it's endless green grass and large trees and hills and dreamy fields and flowing creeks and small towns full of character. Growing up I thought Arizona was just brown, full of ugly cactus and prickly trees, with no pretty historic buildings. But as I've gotten older I've learned to appreciate the Valley of the Sun, especially on cold, rainy weekends such as this one... Or on summer days when the sky is clear and you can see for miles and miles, all the way to the mountains that lie far away in each direction, when the sky seems to reach higher than anywhere I've ever been and the sunsets look unreal.
But my favorite thing about Arizona? The Superstition Mountains and the breathtaking view I had of them when I grew up in my childhood home. The Superstitions are big and glorious and, on days when the clouds rest below the top of the peaks, breathtaking. So yesterday I drove past my childhood home and down Brown Road (because you have a straight shot to the mountains), windshield wipers on, Flat White in hand, chill music playing through the speakers, toward the mountains that I love. You feel far away from the city when you drive out that way. You see people on horseback riding down desert trails. Yesterday, I saw some decked out in long jackets and cowboy hats who looked like legit ranchers. You see some of the desert where I grew up riding four-wheelers and go-carts. And you see houses that have been there for years and years, long before developments started going up everywhere. It's peaceful the closer you get to those mountains. And while I've seen them on thousands of rainy days throughout the years, I never grow tired of admiring their beauty.