Last Tuesday, Eoin and I took our first trip into downtown Phoenix. I’ve decided that Chandler is to Phoenix as Bray is to Dublin: a town (well, city) in its own right but Phoenix is where the action is. We drove to Tempe, which is another town five minutes down the road, parked the car and bought tickets for the Metro Light Rail. (Note: this train is super-cheap. A one ride ticket (it doesn’t matter how long) is only $1.25. Bargainous. And an all day pass is a mere $3.50. Take that, LUAS. )
Unfortunately our plan for the day was slightly scuppered by an inconsiderate gas leak, which caused us to run 20 minutes late. To ease the trauma, we popped into a cafe place called Tom’s Tavern to chow down before we hit the Arizona Science Centre. And guess what? Our waiter turned out to be a Belmullet man (his words) called Sean, who has been living here for seven years. What are the chances? After we’d finished up, and fended off his offer to buy us pints, we wandered down to the Science Centre which is through a little spot called Heritage Square that I’ll definitely come back to.
The Science Centre was great, if a little, er, geared towards children. The first exhibit we saw is a new one called RACE, which was really interesting. It explored the idea that “race” is not really a thing, and how we look, and the colour of our skin is all down to how close to the equator our ancestors lived. Makes sense, eh? They had some headshots of various different people and I was not surprised to see that most of them were of Irish descent. What can I say? We get around.
After that we had planned to have a snack in the Compass restaurant, which is one of those revolving ones but alas, it was closed. After getting stuck in the elevator for a couple of tense minutes, we wandered around and took in some sights instead. One place I really liked, and definitely want to see properly, is the Orpheum Theatre. There is a tour on the 23rd that I have just put into my calendar.
We then did the obligatory oohing and aahing over all the tall buildings (it’s in the Tourist’s Handbook, okay?) before heading back to the homestead.