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Great Things About Arizona

Grand Canyon, Copyright by <a href="" target="new">Moyan Brenn</a>
Grand Canyon, Copyright by Moyan Brenn

Well, since it's the centennial... Figured it might be kinda fun, to follow up last week's discussion on the best things about being a Diamondbacks fan, to throw out a similar kind of thing about living in Arizona. I asked Mrs. SnakePit for suggestions as to what I should put, but most of her suggestions were, while true, a little Mrs. SnakePit-centric to be honest, e.g. "Mrs. SnakePit cooks for me." We'll take those as read, and instead, go for ones that might have a little more general resonance. I admit there are large chunks of the state which are entirely unknown to me, so the list after the jump will certainly reflect this ignorance.

  1. Winter. When the rest of the country is shivering its collective butt off, we're wandering round in shorts and T-shirts. This is why we endure the hell which is summer, the glorious six months from October through March. But if you want snow, you just need to whizz up to Flagstaff and you've still got that as well.
  2. The Grand Canyon. One of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World is located right here in the state. If you haven't seen it - and I know SnakePit Jr. hasn't - then you should go. If you have, then you'll know the word "Grand" doesn't quite do the sheer scale of this justice.
  3. Sedona. The first time I came out to Arizona, in 1997, the future Mrs. SnakePit took me up there. It wasn't just the scenery there that was stunning, but the drive itself was just as amazing, since I'd never been through a landscape like that in my life.
  4. Baseball. In all its forms. Arizona is truly lucky, in that we get not just major-league baseball, but a bonus month at the start, in the shape of spring training, and then again at the end, courtesy of the Arizona Fall League. Throw in some solid collegiate action, and there's no better state for the sport.
  5. Downtown Flagstaff. I love cities that it's possible to get around without driving, in part because this allows us to drink heavily. :) Flagstaff is great for this, with an easily-navigable center that's full of bars, restaurants and other ways to amuse oneself. On the other hand, another plus is...
  6. Traffic. Specifically the fact that "Gridlock" means the traffic is simply not quite moving at its usual 65+ mph. I've experienced the hell which can be big-city chaos, and the roads in Arizona are an impeccably-planned experience, flowing smoothly 99.9% of the time.
  7. Saguaros. Okay, they do grow in some places outside of the state, but they are pretty close to uniquely symbolizing Arizona. They seem like they could have come from another planet, they're just so bizarre-looking. And, speaking of extra-terrestrials:
  8. The Phoenix Lights. There were two incidents that night: the most often-mentioned - largely because they were videotaped - probably were military flares. But the triangular formation of lights seen by much of the state (including Mrs. SnakePit) early in the evening? No clue.

Be interested to hear any other suggestions!