I have spent the past week in Arizona visiting a friend who I met when her family moved to Invercargill for a year back in 2006. It has been five and a half years since we last saw each other.
The snow has settled and there are Christmas lights twinkling from the eaves of houses all over the city of Prescott. Tonight we drive through the Valley of lights, in Prescott Valley, which was fairy lights on steroids.
We drove through arches lit up like falling snowflakes, there were gigantic castles, Snoopy and Charlie Brown, Santa and his reindeer, crucifixes and carol lyrics, not to mention the American flag (of course).
We paid a small donation on the way out for the electricity bill.
I really enjoy walking around the streets of the cities here in Arizona. I find it really exciting hearing the accents and seeing the cowboy hats, much to the amusement of my friends. Shopping is also quite entertaining, cookie dough comes wrapped up like a dog roll (appetizing) and biscuits here do not come in chocolate chip, they are small bread rolls from KFC.
I've also tried Tofurkey (fake turkey) and been amazed by the fact that we could buy a kg of strawberries in the middle of winter.
Arizona is a Republican state, and nothing illustrates this more than the two upside down American flags I have seen.
They have been like this since Obama's re-election.
We drove north to the Grand Canyon today, through hills coated in snow and evergreen trees.
Just like the movies!
It was very foggy at the Canyon unfortunately and so I was not able to see much, we could only just see the Colorado river on the South side of the rim.
All the more reason to come back! I fly to New York this Saturday to have Christmas and New Years in the Big Apple.