Visitors. We are delighted you’ve chosen to visit Sedona!
The first thing you’ll be asked is how long you’ve lived in Sedona. It’s part of the culture to determine how rooted you are in the community. Trust me. Even if you just arrived to spend the day at Tlaquepaque, unless you assert your visitor status, the question will come up.
Next, you will be judged on how you navigate the round-abouts. If you get through the one at Sr179 and Schnebly without a “honk”, you’re ready to tackle the big one and go to the Post Office without stopping or getting hit. How do you navigate a round-about? According to my niece, Reilly, who lives in New Zealand: “If the car coming your way is bigger and faster than you, yield!” Technically, if you’re in the “round” portion, you have the right-of-way. For heaven’s sake, do not stop in the round-about to let cars go by. That is a local reason to use the horn.
So you’re a night person. Hopefully you filled up on nightlife before driving to Sedona. Oh, it’s not that we don’t have a “night life”, it’s just that our version of “tripping the light fantastic” might be a bit different than yours. Did anyone tell you that the average age of a Sedona resident is 51? Having said that, if you want to kick up your boots or stilettos, you should be directed to the Canyon Breeze on the weekends, Sound Bites in the Hyatt Shops, Creekside in the evenings, or Relics, down the road in West Sedona,. No, you won’t see many residents at those places as there are not enough designated drivers in the Sedona to get us home. It’s hard enough at our age to drive, let alone blow into a contraption before starting the car. Now that we have street lights in West Sedona, you’ll see a few of us venturing out.
The residents. Are they friendly? Most of the time. You can find them early in the morning walking in the foothills behind Uptown Sedona, from Forest to Jordan Park, as singles, doubles or small packs. Some will have dogs on leashes while the cat people will be the fast walkers pacing themselves and ending their morning exercise with a stop at Starbucks for a Latte and a paper. The neighborhood is friendly. Just be careful. If the gossip is good, it will be hard to get them to move to the side of the road to let your car go by. Have patience
What’s to love about Sedona? The pesky Javelinas who root through the bulbs, flowers, and prickly pear cactus left unattended, unfenced, and sometimes non-existant; but, if Javelina are not seen for several weeks, residents call out across the arroyos or down the hills (notice how sound carries here?) asking “Have you seen the Javelina?” Next, they will put out food to lure them back. Same with the deer. Bucky and Buckette are always welcome in Sedona.
Cocktail hour. Rock naming. Did you know that the number of rocks named, are in direct proportion to the number of Martinis consumed? You can now understand why the residents prefer their own decks or patios instead of venturing out to a restaurant or bar. Dancing after rock-naming is unheard of in Sedona.
Peace and quiet. Even in the Uptown area of Sedona where dark-sky compliant lighting casts a misty glow over SR89A and SR179, the neighborhoods are dark as pitch. Going next door to a neighbor’s house after dark requires at least one LED 1000 lumen flashlight in order to find the road, let alone the house.
Shopping Sedona. You can tell the female residents by the “Chico’s” look. It has been heard: “Chico’s?” “Chico’s!!” The Sedona male residents? Aloha shirts. Well, think about it. Would it be better if they wore their red dirt shirts?
Sedona has changed, but then who hasn’t. Sedona isn’t the same unfinished, diamond-in-the-rough that I met in the early ‘70s. She’s all grown up now, added a little gloss and glitter, and she has enhanced the scenery in every direction. My Sedona is still Sedona Schnebly: a woman of immense strength and character.
Visitors, come back and mingle with us in Uptown Sedona where we natives are friendly!
Proud Uptown Resident!