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Cheers to Tucson

January 22, 2009

Women Ladies, originally uploaded by IrishFireside.

Corey says… We started our day bright and early and made a bee line for Arizona. Just outside Las Cruses, our minds played tricks on us when we pulled up to the border patrol. We knew we were going west, but we questioned whether or not we didn’t take the wrong road and were about to enter Mexico. It was clear that we are much more familiar with the Canadian border where the border patrol is only on the border.

The two cups of juice I enjoyed at our fancy continental breakfast at La Quinta in Las Cruses decided they needed to be evacuated. We stopped at a lonely exit with an abandoned gas station. From there we could look back at the highway with the desert in the background along with the mountains even further back. A train raced parallel to the highway. A vintage “GAS” sign. A beat up metal wind mill. A dusty road that went in forever. It turned out to be a beautiful stop.

Willcox and Rex Allen
We pulled into the ton of Willcox where we pulled up to a hole-in-the-wall called Rodney’s. It’s so tiny a sign outside directs patrons to read the menu before entering. Inside, it’s a collection of shelves, containers and stovetop burners that make up a kitchen.

Rodney must keep am eye on the place from somewhere outside, because followed us in. We ordered and Rodney delivered our food to us in the bar next door. Between Rodney and the two women in the saloon, we were given a taste of the friendly, local color. As for the food, my burger was fine…the gumbo, on the other hand, did not play to Liam’s tastebuds.

Before getting back on the road, we stopped at the Rex Allen Museum, the silver screens last singing cowboy. It’s a great museum that combines local history with Rex Allen biography.

Finally to Bit’s
We arrived at our friend Bit’s ( where we were greet with tea and homemade scones. Mmmmmm.

After a chat, Bit and her son Zack took us on a tour of Tucson and dinner at a fine Mexican restaurant called Mosaic.

Then it was off to the Auld Dubliner to meet some of the locals for some great music and craic. Thanks to Sharon, Colleen, Fran, Claudia, Chuck, Anne and everyone else for such a warm welcome. The session even included some step dancing by Fran and a danced redition of Singing in the Rain by Colleen, a niece of Gene Kelly.

Then it was home to bed.

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