Thursday afternoon, coming from Linda’s salon, feeling good about my nice haircut. Instead of going straight home I take a detour to pick up stuff from a friend and I’m driving through Paradise Valley, the most expensive dirt in Maricopa County. A place well known for some odd reasons. The only town without a grocery store (wonder what they eat) and where no matter where you are, the maximum speed is 40 miles per hour. And that’s just the beginning.
But I’m cruising North on Invergordon, both sides of the road are lined with mature trees and tall walls. I’m approaching Double Tree and that’s a 4 ways stop. I like this corner, that’s where Paolo Soleri’s studio and residence are located. I own one of his famous bells and also an autographed book of his. I’m sure the only reason I scored the autograph is because we are both from Northern Italy, a rarity in Arizona. The architect is gone now, his work speaks for him.
I’m driving slow, deep in reminiscences of Soleri and the last speeding ticket I received for driving at 30 miles an hour in a deserted area. No joke.
And that’s when I noticed it, the sad, pale yellowish snake slowly slithering in front of the car, trying to reach the median strip. It’s almost there, only the tail is trailing. I decided to give this lost creature a break, I mean, this is Paradise Valley folks, home of the rich and famous. Unless this one is a direct descendant of that one snake that offered Eve the apple, I have no clue how it got here.
I’m cruising very, very slow, I’m sure the drivers behind me are not too happy and finally the sad thing clears the edge of the road. And I reach the stop sign. After the mandatory pause, I proceed, but a look back sends my heart racing. The car immediately behind mine is stopped, driver door open. What? If they dare to try to hurt that poor snake I’ll go back there and…
AHAH!!! Every car is idling and guess what? People are hanging out the car windows with their phone…taking pictures of the snake.
My work is done. I imagine the slithering thing will be an Instagram celebrity before I get to the next stop sign. I drove all the way home with a smile on my lips.