Stretched in All Directions

The green branches of a palo verde tree grow in many directions at Pinnacle Peak Park in Scottsdale, Arizona

As soon as I arrived in Arizona for my interview in February I was struck by the green trees I saw as I drove around town. The palo verde is the state tree of Arizona, the green in the bark contains chlorophyll so they can use both bark and leaves for photosynthesis. I came across this one shortly before sunrise when I visited Pinnacle Peak Park in Scottsdale. We have accomplished a lot in the past six weeks but there is still a lot to do, I feel a bit like this tree, sprawling in all directions, a bit worse for the wear, but still standing, still growing.

Welcome to Arizona

A cactus wren perches on a saguaro cactus with the moon in the background

It’s been a busy week since we moved to Arizona but now it was time for some fun. I got up at 5 a.m. this morning (that wasn’t fun) and headed to Pinnacle Peak Park, the park I visited the day after I interviewed in February but now with time to hike the entire trail instead of just sampling hiking in the desert. As soon as I hit the trail, before the sun even rose above the horizon, I met this cactus wren perched on a large saguaro with the moon in the background, my first new wildlife species in our new home.

What a beautiful welcome to Arizona.