Thursday, June 09, 2005

Agua Fria

Last Sunday we went for a family outing north of Phoenix, to Agua Fria National Monument[^].

Andrew, as is his wont, started the day complaining that we were forcing him, against his constitutional rights, to do something he didn't want to do. He ended the day, as is his wont, saying how much he'd enjoyed it. Being an unsympathetic Australian bastard I maintain that within our family the Constitution of the United States of America doesn't apply; we are neither a republic nor a democracy and what my wife and I say goes!

We took the Kia. A good car to drive around Phoenix in but it's not up to I-17! There's a long uphill stretch between Black Canyon City and the exit to the monument. On the flat my car can do 75 MPH (the speed limit) if the pedal's to the metal. But once we hit that long uphill stretch it started showing the strain of hauling four of us (myself, my wife, Andrew and Morgan). Halfway up the slope we were down to 50 MPH and still decelerating! 18 wheelers were overtaking us! It's a good thing I don't feel the need to compensate for personal shortcomings with my car! :-)

So we parked and went hiking. It wasn't a particularly hot day, even in Phoenix - no more than 95F (35 C). Up there, half a kilometre or so above sea level it was cooler. We actually found a stream of flowing water. Found some shade near a convenient bend in the stream and camped for a couple of hours.

It was about this time that Andrew decided that an appropriate use for an empty water bottle was to refill it in the stream and spray it toward his older sister. How little he knows of the deviousness of the human heart! We bided our time and waited until it was almost time to leave. Then we, Morgan and I, grabbed him and ducked him in the water! Some spluttering and he rises, soaked to the skin and convinced, it seemed, that he'd be wet until his deathbed. Revenge was called for! So he filled his bottle again and sprayed it at me. Heh, in this climate I know I'm going to be dry in 5 minutes!

Serious moment. I could see from his expression that he wasn't quite sure how I'd take being sprayed. I'm not his dad. That thought didn't go through my mind at the time. Why should it have? It was what should and could be, and was, a fun moment. It's the thoughts after the event that I'm relating.

So, after rolling him in the sand and then washing him off again in the stream :-) we made our way back to the car. We were both dry when we got back! A thoroughly fun day!

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