How someone can let their dog bark allllll niiiigghht looooong is beyond me. My, very penetrable, motel room walls were no match for the decibels that this wretched beast belted. I got to sleep pretty early the night before, but when the bladder fairy woke me up in the middle of the night, I was doomed to stay awake for hours after that. I laid there staring at the ceiling listening to that mut yap for an eternity. Once I looked out the window and got a location on it, the thoughts started rolling in about how I could shut that thing up. The most reasonable method would be to go next door and politely ask the owner to quite their yappy dog. That wouldn’t be any fun though. Just like in Big Bend when that little shitzu wouldn’t stop yelping into the darkness, I thought of getting the bear spray out and letting the dog have it. Other options were on the table too. I could use a few zip ties and tie its mouth closed, or I could stuff some of my dirty socks down its gullet. I’m not a mean person, I’m just a light sleeper. Getting a full nights sleep is one of the greater joys in life for me and I think it only happens once or twice a year. Perhaps I shouldn’t be taking my frustration out on the canine. After having plenty of time to think about it, it is clearly the owner of the dog who is guilty. I’ll bear spray the next owner who lets their dog yap all night long within 50 feet of me while I’m trying to sleep. Don’t say I didn’t warn ya!
Eventually the sun rose and yet again I drank as much coffee as humanly possible to feel normal. Checkout time at the Trail Riders Inn was 10am so I had to hustle more than normal to get packed up. 10:05am and I was out of there. Getting jittery from a stomach full of coffee, I tracked down a place with wi-fi and reasonably priced breakfast. It was $5.50 for two pancakes, two eggs, and two sausage links. When the food came out and I saw the size of those pancakes, I felt like I was Adam Richmond in an episode of Man vs Food. The eggs and sausage links didn’t stand a chance but I hit the proverbial wall halfway through the big doughy flapjacks. For the first time in my life, it felt as if even one more bite would send me to the nearest waste basket. Although delicious, they were just to big for my capabilities. Next I was in a full on fight against a food coma. I had another coffee and hit the streets in search of something to get into in Tombstone.
I made a decision to skip Bisbee AZ, 20 miles to the south, and stick around until 2pm to see the reenactment of the gun fight at the O.K. Corral. The ticket was $10 and since this IS the thing to do if you visit Tombstone, I felt the price was justified. 2pm came and myself and a few hundred others piled onto the bleachers in front of a little mock up part of the old western town. The show involved characters portraying Doc Holiday, Wyatt and Virgil Earp, the McLaury boys and about four other fellas that I’m not to familiar with. I thought for a ten dollar show I got my moneys worth. The actors were both funny and talented. They used real guns with blanks and I admit that when the gun fight started I was looking through the view finder of my camera and about jumped out of my seat. It was loud! All the babies in the audience started crying. The actors that were shot laid on the ground motionless for the next 15 mins as everyone exited the mini stadium. Bravo! (side note. The day before, John the bartender, told me that only three men died at the gun fight at the O.K. Corral. He said what was really crazy was that the intersection just up the street from Big Nose Kates saloon saw 70 men die in it within a three year time span from gun fighting.)
Now that I was an official super tourist of Tombstone, my time was up and I had to hit the road. I wanted to travel north until the sun set. I found Picacho Peak state park on my map and it looked as though it was a few hours away so I headed that way. The route would take me through Tucson AZ and a bit north west of that to the park. Just past Tucson I noticed my first saguaro cactus. They are the ones who are shaped like a giant stick man with two arms sticking out and pointing up. These things are way bigger than I imagined. They are taller than most trees in the area and just give that area of the Sonoran desert a great old western vibe. Once again, I was feeling great for having the chance to experience something new. I paid the $25 fee and set up camp in the dark. I could see Phoenix in the distance and the night sky was brilliant, I whipped out the Canon for some night picture practice. One thing I noticed was that the moon was only briefly in the night sky. It hung around for about two hours, after sunset, before disappearing into the horizon. I thought that was odd. Maybe it’s just that way in this region of the country. I’ll have to look into that.