Saturday, April 3, 2010

Phoenix, First-Friday and Dinner

It was quite a lovely day here in Phoenix. I'm finding myself appreciating this city, which I disliked for so long, more and more every day. Even with the impending heat of summer, I still seem to have a cheery disposition about living in the desert. When I reflect on my attitude about this city, I recognize that much of my disdain had to do with where I was in life, maturity, and experience. Which could be the reason I'm actually enjoying life in Phoenix, in a home about four miles from the home where I grew up, about two miles from the high school I attended, and about five miles from the business/educational institution where I started my career and college education. The neighborhood where I grew up was actually gang infested and filled mostly with low-income families. These days, it's a thriving community with a mixture of similar low-income families, artsy-type singles and couples, and alternative-lifestyle families.

Older homes built in the early to mid-1900's have been renovated baring exposed brick, hardwood floors, and beautiful architecture. A cyclical downtown renovation reminiscent of what's occurred in many other large metropolitan cities such as Los Angeles and Seattle. Suddenly it's hip to live in downtown Phoenix. Which makes me even more proud to know that not only did I grow up in this part of the city, but upon my return I haven't gone much further.

Tonight, in downtown was a monthly event known as First-Friday. A cultural art event that brings together artists and vendors allowed to display and sell their creative inventions (whether it's art, handmade jewelry and clothing, or food). This monthly event draws people from all over the Phoenix metropolitan area and beyond. Next month, my good friend and artist, Fernando Moreno, will be showing his work, which consists of some of the most original, oil paintings on canvas. My sister Petrina and I are also hoping to get a booth to display and sell our handmade accessories. You can check out our items online at our Etsy store. Once we secure our booth I'll post additional information.

Dinner was lovely tonight as my hubby and I (well, mostly I) feasted on some of Chef Johnny Chu's fabulous Asian dishes at his restaurant Sens. If you live in Phoenix and haven't been, make it a point at some time to stop by and try some of his dishes. It's a tapas-style restaurant so be prepared to share. I love that we can find such unique restaurants so close to home.

Happy April family and friends! 

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