Did you know that Mexican food is real big in Graham County?

It is.

In fact, it is so big that, due to the really good Mexican food joints in the area, Safford and several surrounding towns have been nic-named "The Salsa Trail."

In the spirit of the local cuisine reptutation Safford hosts an annual Salsa Fest. It is a two-day event centered around the whole "salsa" motif.

Last night the family went down and checked out the stuff. The restaraunts all came out and gave away free cups of salsa. It was pretty cool. Of course, we needed chips. Fortunately, the Lions Club was selling chips for $4 a helping.

Excuse me?


Don't get me wrong. I am all in favor of supporting the Lions Clubs and all - what with the work they do charitably for children with vision problems. Still, I'm not for $4 chips.

After looking around a little more we went home and came back today...

... after swinging by the grocery store and picking up some real good corn tortilla chips of our own.

So, I had all the kids put some tortilla chips into zipper locking baggies and we all (minus Mrs. Neshort, who was feeling tired due to some prescription medicine she just started taking) walked down to the Salsa Fest. Yes, the main event is within walking distance of our house. Megan took a backpack where she put her corn chips. Jesse and Dakota persuaded Megan to tote their chips too.

After a turn in the jumping castle there were three baggies of broken up chips in the backpack.

Why did Megan take the backpack into the jumping castle?

Good question. I do dumb things too - on occasion.

It seemed that the broken chips didn't really bother the kids at all.

So, the main event of the day was the salsa competition. Individuals who believed they had a salsa recipe worthy of bragging about made some up and at 11 a.m. everybody went through and picked up samples of the salsas for community judging. The restaraunts were there again and they were giving out samples of their wares too; but they weren't permitted to be a part of the competition - naturally. Besides, wouldn't it be embarrassing if some Joe Schmoe's salsa beat that of a restaraunt?

Anyway, the kids went through and picked up all the mild salsas and we all sat down to judge.

It was all in fun for us because we weren't aloud to actually vote. Ballots were given to people who bought $4 chips.

In the picture to the right you can see Jesse picking up a sample of salsa from a vendor called Bush & Schurtz. I mention this restaraunt by name because that salsa was the biggest hit for three out of four of the kids. Catalina's favorite salsa came from a competive individual. We'll probably make it a point to swing by Bush & Schurtz in the near future. I didn't know it existed before today.

So, as we were finishing up our salsa and determining which we liked the best a lady came around asking people if the needed a ballot. We said we didn't get any but we also had not purchased any chips. She gave each of us (minus Dakota) a ballot. We all voted for our favorite competative salsas. We didn't hang around to find out the results of the votes but I'm sure they will be in the local newspaper.

Finally, Jesse and I took a drive over to a place where I have seen a large pomegranate tree. Our intent was to ask the owners of the tree if we could have some of their pomegranates. When we got there it was clear the tree is on a vacant lot. There was once a house there but not any more. It is not clear what happened to the house; but the tree is doing just fine. Most of the pomegranates were already split and ruined but there were still some good ones. Jesse and I picked as many good ones as we could reach; but the best ones were 15 feet off the ground and impossible to retrieve without some kind of harvesting hook on a pole.

I was hoping I could get enough to make into jelly; but I think I'm short.


I may be buying a tree of my own this winter. I was just hoping to get a bunch this season.




Your lips are like a scarlet thread;
your mouth is lovely.
Your cheek behind your veil
is like a slice of pomegranate.

Song of Solomon 4:3