Today, Friday, February 14, is Valentines Day. Our only scheduled activities were the Hot Springs Village pickleball round-robin and the Palm Creek Valentines dinner and dance. It was a great evening as dinner was prime rib and all the sides followed by a delicious slice of cheese cake, and the band was very good forcing us to dance the night away, at least until 9 PM.
Visiting Sedona, Arizona, has been on Kay’s secondary life list for some time. With great weather forecast for the weekend, we drove north into the mountains of north central Arizona. Apparently, Valentines Day weekend is the busiest weekend of the year in Sedona; traffic was horrendous, taking hours to move just a few miles into the small city. Fortunately, a volunteer at the National Forest Service Visitors Center told us of a short cost that save countless time. The red rock mountains surrounding Sedona were quite spectacular. We hiked a couple of short trails to make photographs. Kay really enjoyed Sedona while I thought it was just okay. Neither of us has a desire to return. Since all lodging accommodations were full, we stayed in an overpriced motel in Camp Verde, south of Sedona.
We opted not to return to the Sedona area on Sunday, and instead visited Montezuma Castle National Monument near Camp Verde. We arrived just after the doors were opened, avoiding any crowds that might venture a visit. Montezuma Castle National Monument protects a set of well-preserved dwellings located in Camp Verde, Arizona which were built and used by the Sinagua people, a pre-Columbian culture closely related to the Hohokam and other indigenous peoples of the southwestern United States, between approximately 1100 and 1425 AD. As one of the best preserved cliff dwellings in North America, this 20 room high-rise apartment, nestled into a towering limestone cliff, tells a story of ingenuity, survival and prosperity in an unforgiving desert landscape.