The color of the desert in early summer ranges from pink to purple as the various agaves send out their tall stems and blossoms to capture the attention of the birds, the jacaranda trees bloom and the prickly pear cactus fruit ripens. A cloudy morning permitted me, the jack rabbits, bunnies and geckos to come out from our shelters for a long walk or a scamper. It is surprisingly quiet in Mesa as not only the winter visitors, but many neighbors as well, flee to the cooler climates of Prescott, Payson or Flagstaff, Arizona where they own homes or cabins.
Five members of the Arbor Rose Caregiver Support Group attended a memorial service yesterday for another member's husband who passed away on June 5th. The service, led lovingly by the chaplain of the East Valley Hospice was a celebration of Larry's life, shared by his mother, his siblings, his children and six grandchildren who travelled from Idaho, Iowa and North Carolina. Tears were shed, mostly by the children who miss their grandpa, but his wife shared that she had been losing her husband of 46 years to Alzheimer's disease for the past few years and has been mourning his loss each time his illness progressed. Now the end is more of a blessing, a relief from the worries and the pain of this devastating illness.
Another member of our support group who is a pastry chef baked a tableful of delicious chocolate confections for the event, as Pat revealed how much her husband Larry loved chocolate. John could not be present himself as he cares for his mother full-time and she can only attend the Arbor Rose Day Club on weekdays.