That’s the comic - and completely inadequate - description one hears of the Grand Canyon, one of the scenic wonders of our planet.
Last week, She Who Must Be Obeyed and Elder daughter spent a long weekend knocking about in Arizona. A night in luxe digs in Scottsdale, followed by three nights in Sedona, their Base of Operations from which they made a pilgrimage to the Canyon a week ago today.
They were, to put it mildly, Suitably Impressed.
I was not present with them on this trip, a Mother-Daughter Outing that served both as a celebration of Mother’s Day and of Elder Daughter’s thirtieth birthday. But I have seen the Grand Canyon, both from the vantage point of a speeding jetliner seven miles up and from ground level. Yes: I was a freshly-minted graduate when I saw the Great Big Hole as part of a month-long, 10,000 mile cross-country Post-Collegiate Trek.
I have never forgotten the awe I felt when I saw that horizon-to-horizon panorama of eroded rock. Now, SWMBO and Elder Daughter know that feeling as well.
Not everybody is religious, but it’s hard to look at such spellbinding natural beauty without feeling the presence of... something divine. And any time we see an especially dramatic part of God’s handiwork, it’s traditional to recite a blessing - and the girls did exactly that: Barukh Atah Ha-Shem, Elokeinu melekh ha-olam, oseh ma-asei v’reishit - Blessed are You, Lord our God, Source of Creation.
Elder Daughter observed that when we look at the Earth (or parts thereof), it is the the rugose - the eroded - that catches our eye. But these are attributes that are not considered desirable in people, where youth and smooth skin are valued over age and wrinkles.
Between Scottsdale, Sedona, and the canyon, the Missus came back with a boatload of beautiful photographs. I’ve tucked a few below the fold for those who care to take a look.
View from the girls’ room at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess. Yowza.
Late-afternoon rays paint the rocks.
Sunset in Sedona.
Evening shadows and deepening colors.
Towers of stone outside Sedona.
The view from Red Rock Loop Road in Sedona.
An old Elisson tradition: the Rose in the Toilet. Beauty in unexpected places, as Sissy Willis would say.