February is a wacky month of Gem, Mineral and Fossil Shows and exhibits throughout Tucson (a rodeo, too, coming next week) and so we took a ride over the Tucson Mountains to our absolutely favorite Fossil and Rock Shop on Kinney Road. I always discover something wonderful in this shop, and I so enjoy saying hi to Ron, who is a retired paleontologist from Long Island. He knows so much about fossils and minerals of the Southwest, and browsing his shop always brings alive for me the ancient earth history of this Sonoran desert.
Today I chose four pieces all native to Southern Arizona and the Sonoran desert. I found a beautiful "desert rose" (made of pinkish selenite), two tiny pieces of turquiose from Bisbee, and a magnificent, tiny octahedral fluorite (formed from a mineral which came from the Silver Bell mine. So many complex crystals set in its rock!) Leigh selected another complex rock; his is a piece of quartzite.
I love the colors, textures and histories of these beautiful artforms of nature. Ron is a very responsible collector and truly appreciates all that is housed in his shop. So I take away these tiny items carefully, with much respect for their beauty and heritage. And I promise that they will have places of honor here in the rock landscape of my own desert home.
Every day, there's something new to learn about the amazing Sonoran Desert.