So Much Muchness and My love affair with the Desert and Greek Food.

Hello Out there! I must apologize for some slackery. No, this is not going to be an apologetic post in its entirety. So please hang with me. If you have been reading, I’m still allowing myself a few breaks in my mourning process. I will say that the song, Starry Starry Night, by Don McClean hit me right in the feels. It has taken on new meaning in my life, the song is not only a remarkable tribute to Van Gogh, but…(as I just found out) an extremely touching metaphor for anyone who has lost someone to suicide. (Especially those of the artistic kind).

I also jumped off of socially media for awhile. I’ve been hearing a lot of talk about “the social media cleanse.” I recommend it for anyone. I believe things peaked for me after the Government shut-down fiasco, the debate over the youth in MAGA hats disrespecting a Native American Elder, and the abortion backlash after New York City. (Which I hear Trump is going to make a part of his platform for his state of the Union speech BTW). Trust me. I have no intentions of getting into any of that here. That is why I jumped off.

I feel like one of those sea mammals who comes up for air every now and again. No Shutdown…Deep cleansing breath….and we are submerging again into murky waters. I have taken full advantage of my deep cleansing breaths.

My daughter Kira’s neurosurgeon has given her the go ahead to fly to Hawaii to visit her sister before removing a tumor in her middle ear. For one, she will not be able to fly for awhile after the surgery due to pressurization, and for two, who knows if her hearing will be compromised after the surgery or if their could be complications. I am hopeful there will be none, but my motherhood anxieties will take me down multiple tangents.

I’m sure sisterhood pics in Hawaii are forthcoming. I believe a week in Hawaii “is just what the doctor ordered” as a wellness pre-requisite before tackling something of this nature. Note to Mom: I should be well rested too.

I’m hopeful that while my daughter’s trip is taking place that her air traffic controller will be well rested with fewer stressors for now. I have two mini-trips planned myself. One, with my husband and I alone, and another with my younger children. Okay softball is involved. Ha. Ha. I wish I was announcing that I was off to some to exotic location. However…Here it is…drumroll please…I’m taking a trip to Arizona and another trip to Nevada!

Okay I am excited that I will be going “the Grand Canyon route” through Kanab on my way back from Arizona. I’m looking forward to the Desert, the open road, and getting away from the snow, cold, and pollution inversion for awhile. I’ve got more ice-fishing pics for you all BTW:) This year, I have actually embraced the snow, and with recent news about global warming, I’ve really come to appreciate ICE.




Whoever thought I’d take the magnificence of ICE for granted? Is this the appropriate time to mention that NASA scientists just revealed that a huge cavity underneath one of Antartica’s glaciers is three times the size of Manhattan? Yes, so much muchness.

I am excited to take a trip through the four corners area. There’s just something nostalgic about the desert, and stopping to look at the handiwork of local artisans and craftsmen along the road.  I’m also going to practice some of my “no filter” photography skills. Ha. Ha. These are not skills. I really have a deficit when it comes to photography filters and edits.

I don’t know if I have ever mentioned this but my father worked at a Steel Mill and retired from a coal mine. I’m a contradiction of sorts. I often refer to myself as a sort-of modern day Loretta Lynn. My first brush with higher education occurred when I attended a small two-year College that was once a mining school. This was located in the heart of Castle Valley, Utah.

Before you feel sorry for me, I just want to mention that the Arches and Canyonlands were not far off.  Neither was Nine-Mile Canyon, The Colorado River, or the Green River. I attended school there as a theatre major and the head of our department had his own river-rafting company. BONUS!

Also, there was an English program that integrated wilderness study, and an exploration of naturalist writers. (I recall a lot of Edward Abbey and a little cowboy poetry). There were river excursions, hikes down into Escalante Canyon, and a few explorations of the San Rafael Swell. It was Dinosaur country which also translates into Coal Country.

It was here in this small mining town that I embraced women’s literature and Greek Food. Yes, this entire post is building towards Greek Food. Carbon County’s mining history runs deep and because of this, the area has many Greek and Japanese descendants.

Also, because of the proximal closeness to the four corners area, many of the students I attended school with were Native American. This experience enriched my life in ways I cannot even convey. It truly shaped me in ways that have been influential to this day.

As a member of the theatre, I often had to go around to the local businesses for advertising purposes. This was when I became aware of all the local Greek cafes and became familiar with a few of the local dogs. When I transferred to the University of Utah, I got a job waitressing at this place called “Chop Suey Luey’s” and I later waitressed at another Greek Restaurant called the “Olympian.” “The Other Place” in Salt Lake City was my go to place for Greek omelettes. I don’t even know if any of the above exist anymore.

This summer I got my Greek food fix off of a food truck at the local farmers market. Fried Falafel with tahini cilantro dressing became my guilty pleasure. Y’all I cant contain my excitement much longer. In every town I have ever lived, my children and I have had our “place.” That was like-item of business number one. We got attached to this Italian place called Zilios, but they have since closed down, much to our grave disappointment.

Now, I’ve got my coffee place locked in. It’s got the Buddha Bar vibe, orange paint, and loft brick feel to it. There is also open mic poetry night. Godfathers Pizza has provided my family with some adequate respite with the loss of Zilios, but THIS WEEK my friends…I just discovered a new Greek place that just moved to the corner. AUTHENTIC. Not only is it authentic it has my other Greek places beat hands down. I think there might be an Aphrodite spell on their Spanakopata. The owner is also a Dallas Cowboys fan which immediately won my family over. (I’m Seattle BTW). I Have my Place. 

So, this my friends has been the biggest excitement of my week, otherwise I have felt like a bargain basement mom who hides out in the basement writing school papers all the time. Oh yes, and my husband and I painted the kitchen. I’m integrating Oranges, Pomegranates and figs into my decor. I really am a desert girl at heart. Orange reminds me of the desert, It’s my favorite color. Can you tell?



I sure hope remodeling does not catch up with fast fashion. I heard someone say once remodeling should happen every five years to keep up with trends. WHAT? Friends, put items in your home that make you happy, choose YOUR colors. It is far more sustainable. I don’t believe there is any magazine out there it the world that would suggest you paint your room bright orange, but I did it. Life is too short. I want to feel the glowiness of sunsets no matter how impractical.

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Anyway, I am working on a piece about Native American Women and Wellness that I may share with you at some point, and I also foresee sharing more of my love for the desert with you. Thank you for staying with me. Now, I must get to a writing piece about self-representation in art and must leave my blog alone.  I hope you all have your happy spaces. I’d love to hear about them. Where is your happy place, and why does it bring joy to you?


Rachelle Whiting



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