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Published: February 8th 2015
We finish off our second week in Tucson with a couple days of rain. It was quite unusual to have so much rain in the desert. Mt Lemon which is the highest mountain bordering Tucson received over 5 inches of rain. Of course there is always a danger of flash floods, which thank goodness didn't happen. The locals now claim it will be fabulous spring with so much rain in the ground. As a side note, the Sequora cactus can hold enough water for a year, so they should be could until 2016.
After a couple games of golf and a regular routine of exercise, shopping etc, we did visit the Tucson Museum of Art. This was an interesting eclectic collection of historical and contemporary paintings and sculptures. Of course there was a cowboy section but also, works by Andy Warhol, Salvadore Dali, Renoir, Pablo Picasso and other famous artists. We purchased a coupon book for $18 at the Tucson visitor center which gave us 2 for 1 for many attractions and therefore it was only $10.00 entrance to the Museum of Art. Well worth the visit for those who have an interest in Art and History.
1st - February 15th there is the Gem show in Tuscon which is the largest in the world. It has to be held in numerous venues because of it's size and people come from all over the World. It's a big event here! Apparently there are some excellent values on gems and jewelry and it is accessible to the public as well as wholesalers. We're less than enthused about jewelry etc and with the high exchange rate, we'll probably take a pass, but for many, it's a "must attend"
The Pima Air and Space Museum is a must see for the area. It is the 3rd largest in the USA and we spent almost a full day with various tours etc. It's next door to a US Airforce base which has a "boneyard" containing over 4,000 airplanes, either in storage waiting further use or being dismantled for parts and/or salvage. The vastness of this facility highlights the scale of the US Military and it's influence over economic and technological development. It was amazing to be able to see in this one facility, how quickly the technology of flight changed in slightly over 100 years. The Wright Brothers first flight
took place in 1903 and now there are planes travelling 3 times the speed of sound!!!! Of course, having 2 World Wars, since the first flight, necessitated the advancement of technological breakthroughs in order for the Allies to gain competitive advantage in the skies.
About 1 hour drive south of Tuscon is the small historical town of Tubac. There is a Presidio (Fort) Museum and a number of Missions, however, the real attraction, at this time of year, is the Arts and Craft Festivial that attracts thousands of visitors for this week long event. The Town also has a number of permanent artist, so it's an interesting place to visit anytime. Obviously the style is very much "Southwestern" in addition to a strong Mexican influence.
On the way back from Tubac we had to go through another US Border Patrol check point similar to the one in South Texas. There were also a number of towers we could see from the highway that were obviously used for broader survellience. Big Brother is really watching at least in this part of the world!
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