We tried checking into the Phoenician when we first
got to Scottsdale around noon, but they said that the room was not going
to be ready for two hours. We decided to drop off our bags with the bellmen
before taking off to Tonto Natural Bridge
State Park for the day.
We arrived back at the Phoenician after dark to find
our bags waiting for us in the room. The room itself was about the size of
two normal hotel rooms with a large sitting area. The bath was European-styled,
with a bidet. I have never seen a bidet in an American resort before, although
of course, such are the norm in Europe.
On the way in, we saw the Sony welcome dinner was
in progress at the Jokake Inn, so we walked over to see if we could still
get some grub. At the dinner, we met various Sony employees and got to "talk
A couple of large telescopes had been set up on the
small hill behind the inn for star-gazing. After dinner, we took turns with
others to look at the moon, saturn, and jupiter up close. In spite of the
bright surface, the deep craters on the moon were unmistakable. The four
Galilean Moons of Jupiter were distinctive dots hanging about the golden
orb of the gas giant, while Saturn was whispy white. We could even make out
divisions in the rings quite easily.
Upon returning to the hotel, we decided to go visit
the cactus garden lining the hillside across from the main lobby. The garden
was deserted. Red, green, yellow, and blue mailbu lights spotlighted various
cacti in an eerie unearthly splendor. The cloak of darkness gives everything
a different personality.