Nature's Beauty
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The text, photos, and drawings in this site share my travels, work, and experiences. Use the Topics on the left side of the screen to start navigating this site. All photos and text are © by Mike Simons, unless otherwise noted. The photos are scanned and posted here directly from prints or from my digital camera--no color manipulation is required when it comes to the spectacular lighting in the southwest!


August 2012

Be sure to check out my wife's fashion design business! Laura Tanzer has a studio in downtown Tucson as well as online store: I help with strategic planning, marketing, social media, and web site design & maintenance for this women's design start-up. Laura's designs are sophisticated, modern, beautiful, and always comfortable!

November 2011

My primary weekend and evening hobby, after cooking and reading, is working on my family tree. This research has been most enjoyable! Along the way I've communicated with lots of distant relatives and sources who have graciously shared valuable nuggets (and large chunks) of information. Found new relatives in San Francisco, Mississippi, and right here in Arizona! Laura and I finished our flooring and guest bath remodeling project and are quite happy with the results. At work, going into my fourth successful year at Corrigo and Intuit!

April 2008

Exciting career change news: I have joined the team at Corrigo, supporting their partner Intuit in selling the Intuit Field Service Management ES software to QuickBooks Enterprise Suite customers.

April 2005

Our new house is truly blessed! We have a momma hummingbird and nest in the olive tree at our front door; we have a momma Gambel's quail in my garden beneath the collard greens--with 6 or 7 eggs. The cactus are proliferating, the wildflowers are blooming; it is simply gorgeous here.

November 2004

This year, we are doing lots of work around our house. Pulling out two and a half tons of cactus and oleander, carting them into a roll-away dumpster for removal. Indoors, we are planning to remove some walls and make a bigger pantry/laundy room. We are about to learn how to hand apply texture to the ceilings and then paint the rooms. Great fun! A year ago at this time: for one weekend in October almost everything in our former house was under blue tape and plastic, including the kitchen.

June 2003

Once again, June is upon us. That means dry, hot days. The birds are mostly quiet, saving every ounce of water and energy for the cooler morning hours when they search for food and water. The retirees have gone back to their homes in the North where it is cooler. The university students have gone back to their homes. The roads are almost empty; it takes barely 30 minutes to get to work! Occasionally a small, thin cloud will appear in the middle of a harsh blue sky. At 7 AM, a cloud provides momentary relief from the sun's intensity. A dry, hot wind comes up in the morning, pushing away the precious cooler night air.

April 2000

Sylloge ran a "5k Contest", just to see how much one could do with a web page (or site) in under 5000 bytes. My submissions:

A sustainable page for a sustainable planet: when faced with limited resources, how will one allocate them?

A haiku: my minimalist 1158-byte file. When I started thinking of written works of beauty, the haiku immediately came to mind.



Current Stuff

Sarazino's Everyday Salama. Totally lovin' it!.

Gilbert & Sullivan's The Mikado. Great, fun operetta that keeps me humming all day.

Anything and everything on KXCI.

The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand. Finished it, didn't enjoy it as much as Atlas Shrugged.

Under The Dome, by Stephen King. Over one thousand pages of classic Maine characters stuck on one side or the other of a mysterious dome.

Cien Años de Soledad, by Gabriel García Márquez. I'm revisiting this magical book I read about twenty years ago. Talk about a family tree!

The Interpreter of Maladies and Unaccustomed Earth, both by Jhumpa Lahiri. Lovely short stories with an Indian-American perspective!

Hug Your Customers, by Jack Mitchell. A great book for anyone looking to grow their business!

Six Frigates: The Epic History of the Founding of the U.S. Navy, by Ian W. Toll. A great perspective on the US naval history and battles in the Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea between 1790 and 1815.

Over the Edge of the World: Magellan's Terrifying Circumnavigation of the Globe, by Laurence Bergreen. A thrilling and ghastly history of 250 men and the 18 survivors of mutinies, shipwrecks, starvation, and more.

Brutal Journey: The Epic Story of the First Crossing of North America, by Paul Schneider. A fascinating history of 400+ Spanish explorers and the 4 survivors of the Narvaez expedition of 1528.

In The Devil's Garden, by Stewart Lee Allen. Wonderful history of how foods get their reputations (such as how the apple became the forbidden fruit of Eden). History, intrigue, and recipes. Something between Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code and Michael Pollan's The Botany of Desire.



What's to do in Tucson?

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum - (2021 N. Kinney Road, Northwest of gorgeous Gates Pass) The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is a world-renowned zoo, natural history museum and botanical garden. Check out the hummingbird aviary, and those cute little prairie dogs! A must-see when in town.

Hiking - hikers will love walking among our friendly green cactus. Some favorite hikes are: Blackett's Ridge Trail and Romero Canyon Trail.

Tohono Chul Park - (7366 N. Paseo del Norte) is one of our favorite places. The park promotes the conservation of arid regions and provides an opportunity to experience the desert firsthand. There are bird-walks, demonstrations of low-water use desert plants for landscaping, and more. Grounds are open 7:00 a.m. to sunset daily.

Check out Going Back To Bisbee, by Richard Shelton. It's a wonderful book about the geology, history, people, and animals of Southern Arizona!



Copyright © 2000-2010, Mike Simons - 

Last update on Apr. 24, 2013