This is my favorite view of Arizona. Sitting comfortably in a seat by the window, watching the desert slowly get further and further away. As I fly higher, I wonder why people even live in this barren desert? At 30,000 feet, you can’t see the cars, roadways and people. What you see is a brown desert with mountains, a place where people weren’t meant to live.
On one particular flight out of Arizona, there was a family in the row behind me who were apparently visiting the desert and were heading back home. As we took off, the father said, “Look out the window, kids, and see all the colors.”
The youngest son looked out the window and asked his father, “What colors?”
That statement from a young child stuck with me because it was as much a simple observation as it was true! What colors? Brown? Light brown? Tan? Sure those are colors, but they are all shades of brown! The brown clouds of pollution doesn’t help either!
That child’s innocent observation made me even happier to be leaving the desert. I knew it would be green where we would be landing, and I was ready to hit the lake to go skiing, swimming and fishing! There are those in Arizona who say you can ski, swim and fish in Arizona. Yes, they are correct. What they fail to tell you is you have to drive at least an hour to get to any lake. Once you’re there, it’s a small lake (compared to what I’m used to) and overcrowded. There isn’t much room to ski because of the narrow waterways. The worst part of going to an Arizona lake is it’s STILL DESERT! Being on a boat with cactus and rocks just isn’t my kind of lake experience.
Taking a look at the two views from an airplane window, where would you rather be? As a disclaimer, I will tell you I used Adobe Fireworks to modify these images. I just don’t have any good photos from the airplane window, but those are real and unaltered aerial photos. These pictures are for illustration purposes to relay the feelings I experience when leaving Arizona, and arriving in another destination (the best part). Although altered images, the desert really looks as it does in that photo, and where I like to visit really looks like the other photo.
What’s just as good as flying out of Arizona? Driving out of Arizona! There is nothing I want more than to see Arizona in my rear-view mirror. I’ve flown and driven away from Arizona, and they’re both just as satisfying. In a way, however, it is somewhat depressing. You see, when you’re living your day-to-day life in Arizona, it’s easy to stay in denial and ignore the fact you live in a desert. But, once you fly above it or drive out of town through the desert, you’re reminded how sad and desolate the Arizona desert is.
How desolate? Arizona is in the Sonoran desert and it covers 120,000 square miles of southwestern Arizona and southern California. In case that’s not enough desert for you, there are four deserts in Arizona. In northwest Arizona, there is the Mojave desert. Southeast Arizona is part of the Chihuahuan desert, and northeast Arizona lies in the Great Basin Desert. It takes a long time to fly away or drive out of the desert, but once you’re gone it’s such a great feeling to leave Arizona behind!
I know I’m not alone with these feelings, so please share your comments here and you can do so anonymously.
As with all articles, I realize there are also people who disagree and love living in Arizona. Arizona wouldn’t have people if it didn’t have its fans. I’m just not one of those people. I was raised with different ideals and four seasons. I prefer the people who love Arizona just stay here and wallow in their desert lifestyles, it’s just not for me.