The Tohona O’ogham people of southwestern Arizona believe that the saguaro cactus represent their relatives, because when you die you go back to the earth and the cactus spring up from the earth. As I drive through these forests of giant cactus, I can see the resemblance to the human figure, and have always felt that these are forests of ‘spirits’. Each one unique, many with a certainly ‘personality’ shall we say, in the way they gesture with their ‘arms’. I’m about to begin my workshop with MISA here at Tanque Verde Ranch, and it’s been hot, hot hotter than usual, as everyone is saying down here. Figures! I hear a poolside dip calling before we begin tomorrow. But the last few days of sleeping in the desert surrounding by these cactus people has been precious. Each night, I was serenaded to sleep by the yipping of coyotes, the hoot of the great-horned owl, and last night a packrat in a prickly pear cactus came out to explore, unperturbed by my red-gelled headlamp. These have been my ‘friends’ of the past two weeks, oh – except for a short visit with Jack Dykinga and Ralph Nordstrom, and Lizz Bartlett in Death Valley, all desert ‘rats’ of a sort!!

Let’s hope for a great workshop ahead…