Day 251 – Cottonwood

We had planned to go hiking but it snowed overnight and while the snow didn’t stick on the roads at all and only on the higher part of the mountains, it’s still gray and cloudy and we don’t want to be out on slickrock when it’s wet.

So we head to the nearby town of Cottonwood. We’ve been told that it has a nice Main Street with shops and lots of wineries that do tastings.

There are neat little shops. We have a great discussion with the owner of a local artists’ gallery about what to see and do when she visits Virginia and DC later this year. We pick up a few odd treats at Little Moo’s, a gourmet food shop that, surprisingly, doesn’t devote itself to Arizona-crafted goodies but instead imports stuff from around the country. I am seduced by a Portland, Oregon-crafted “adult” peanut butter with espresso nibs – coffee and peanut butter, yum! – and a bacon-peanut-butter-cup from a small company in Massachusetts.

Walt gets into a discussion with a carpenter-turned-artist at another local artists’ collective. He was a lather in a California Carpenters’ local for years before turning his hobby into a full-time job. We love his side tables: slabs of waxed mesquite or eucalyptus on elegant iron bases. I take his card to add to my collection of furniture we might want some day, when we have a house.

We come to Larry’s Antiques, noting the huge area of signs and industrial iron pieces in the yard behind it. Turns out Larry’s got a huge building, two barns, a couple of small buildings and all kinds of stuff in the yards in between. We spend a good deal of time hunting through everything. Unfortunately, as usual, most of what we love are the old iron pieces that would make great yard sculpture and are way too big and heavy to fit in our car.

Still, I find a couple of books and a really nicely done brass basket; I’m pretty sure it’s from the 1940s, it is so heavy and detailed that it has to be old. I’m out of the store for less than $20.

We continue wandering, stopping at a gourmet oils and vinegars shop only because it also advertises homemade fudge. We buy a sample to take home.

After a bit more meandering, we are lured into the Colt Grill, by the meat smokers at the far end of the outside patio. It’s a casual place, with orders placed at the bar and picked up at the far end but the ambience is very nice and the food turns out to be great. Walt orders a brisket platter with beans and I get a small salad with smoked turkey and a side of scrumptious mac-and-cheese. I’m so stuffed, I can’t even contemplate getting a “cowboy cookie” from the huge jar on the counter. I’m tempted to get one to go but Walt reminds me that we already have plenty of treats we’ve bought today.

For a zero day, we’ve had a lot of fun.

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