So many things have come up at the last that it's made this a mix of getting the next book out, reading the papers (ugh), fixing up the last of the needed items for this house, and packing what has to go back to Oregon. The lady who has arranged to do our cleaning has not been communicating with us, which is another concern. The drawbacks of a vacation rental.
wildlife cam in our Tucson backyard
It's always ironic to me how we start off with a month and a half here, which seems like a lot of time. Then comes the last week and so many things I wanted to do don't get done. We did make it to the Arizona Historical Museum, which was on my list.
Then we drove down to Barrio Viejo. This is a district of Tucson that is right near downtown. The shrine El Tiradito is there, as well as where [Elysian Grove and Carrilo Gardens] had been a center of Tucson life in the period where I wrote many of my historic romances.
Barrio Viejo has been preserved as of historic importance as the only way to prevent Tucson from putting new buildings right over top of it. It took community effort to have what is there today-- a place of beauty, interest, and history.
We were actually in shock when we got there this week, as a few years ago this district was filled with derelict buildings that suggested, broken doors, scorpions and cockroaches more than a desirable location to live. The ones living there then probably did so due to low rents. There are still dwellings waiting to be reclaimed but the dominant feeling is of gentrification in a way that is determined to keep the feel of the original dwellings-- but with interiors modernized for today. Of course, those residents from our last visit have probably been forced out as the new prices would dictate even rents beyond what they would likely afford.
Stopping to talk to those doing some of the men working on one restoration, while I was photographing one of the shrines, Ranch Boss learned that the dwelling was being restored by a private party that cared, something about professors and Tucson history. They gave him this link to show the work and spirit that has gone into making this home again one that would be a delight in which to live-- [House Made of Mud].
What was particularly appreciated by me was how many of the homes and small parks had information regarding their history. Without a doubt, it'd be a nice place to live with its convenience to downtown especially for young working couples or singles. It has the feel of art combined with history. I often think how living right downtown would be wonderful-- but I also love living back of beyond.
I can definitely see setting a contemporary romance with the hero owning one of these. Oh yeah, he's a lawyer investigating... or she's a lawyer investigating him...
For now that has to be put on a backburner as I have an Oregon historical (Love Waits) due out the 21st (in pre-order now).