One thing that struck me immediately upon arrival in the Grand Canyon: The people who work there. They are happy people. Not once did I encounter a surly face or a bored expression. These people were happy to be there. And several said so!
And honestly, how could they possibly be unhappy? The office they work in has this incredible and fantastic view. There’s no sitting behind a computer for hours on end, wondering how it is that you, an intelligent being, wound up supporting a group of people who seem completely helpless. Were it not for “you”, the intelligent one sitting behind that desk, those people you support would be utterly lost! Had I not been in the Grand Canyon, I would have been moaning to my co-workers about the lack of functional soap dispensers in the ladies’ restrooms (this is true–it happens at least once a week) that are starting to resemble movie restrooms in Union City, NJ. You know what I mean. Where the floors are all completely wet, half the doors don’t lock, the toilet seats themselves have been splattered with . . . well, let’s not go beyond that description. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.
But I digress.
The people who go to the Grand Canyon, also are happy people. I think the only thing that threw me off guard were the stickers pasted on all entryways to the buildings in the Grand Canyon, which clearly stated that even with a license, fire arms were not permitted inside.
Being a New Yorker I was disturbed by this. Well, of course you should not bring a firearm into a public building, permit or no. I muttered something under my breath about this, I think I said I thought it was sad that anyone needed to be reminded not to do this, just loud enough for someone to hear me. The woman behind me replied that she thought it was illegal to deprive someone of the right to bring their firearm into any building.
See. Around the time I was visiting, Arizona was about to pass some gun law, I can’t even remember the details of it, but it essentially made it easier to have a gun on you at any time so long as you had a permit. I think it had to do with being able to have a concealed weapon on you. And this woman was clearly pro-gun. But she forgot that she was actually on federal property. So Arizona gun laws are not the lay of the land in Grand Canyon!
Yeah, and the week after I got back from Arizona, Arizona declared war against immigrants.
I consider myself a closet Republican. I am a practical person. But I’d like to see certain things occur, like marriage between men and men or women and women, universal health care (yeah, can you tell I’m a pessimist? Sorry Obama!) and laws being created to protect the citizens of this country instead of protecting CAPITALISM (Hello Big Beef and BP!). And for those immigrants who work so hard for their families–if they want to be here to find better opportunities, we should figure out a way to make them legal. The ones who work so hard, and I know one family very well, they deserve to be here.
I digress again.
I was saying that most of the people who go to the Grand Canyon are also happy people. I don’t think I ever adjusted to the two hour time difference (Arizona stays on daylight standard or whatever), so I was always up early. I stumbled out to one of the lodge cafeterias and chugged on a cup of coffee. As I stood around, chugging my coffee and feeling sleepy, a very cheerful woman who appeared to be in her late 40s asked me where I was from. So we started chatting.
She was feeling very proud of herself because, the previous day, she had hiked the Indian Garden trail (I hear it’s a six hour trek round trip) and had improved her time by two hours from the previous year. And, she said, she was turning 55 in three days and had always wanted to hike in a mini skirt before she turned 55.
Get what I’m talking about?