The same day that temperatures were predicted to be -21 degrees Fahrenheit in Chicago, I was putting my new hiking stick to use by climbing up Airport Mesa in Sedona, Arizona. It was probably about 62 degrees Fahrenheit. The sun was shining. It was pretty glorious.
I'm not much of a hiker, but it's an activity I've always wanted to get into. I'm slow and I don't know how much climbing I'd be able to accomplish, but I knew that while I was in Sedona, I needed to try at least a little bit of hiking.
My first day, I selected a trail that promised to be very easy and relatively short (1.1 miles each way). It was a nice hike, not too strenuous (as promised) and because the weather is so lovely and everyone is out hiking all the time, it was pleasantly busy at 1pm on a Monday.
The second day, I decided I had to try to experience a couple of Sedona's famous
vortices. Using the map above, I made my way, first, to Chapel of the Holy Cross. The Chapel sits directly at a Vortex and boasts spectacular views. It's a popular spot and while I loved it there, I found it a bit too buzzy to really feel calm or thoughtful there. So, I made my way to the second Vortex I believed I could reach without having to hike to the top of a mountain: Airport Mesa. This particular Vortex overlooks one of Sedona's most impressive vistas and is, blessedly, much quieter than Holy Cross. I sat for nearly an hour admiring the view and feeling pretty lucky to be right there at that moment.
Whatever Sedona's vortices are, I will say that I think there is something to the "healing energy" claims. After I visited a Vortex, I felt pretty calm, very happy, and I even experienced a little relief from the pain in my left knee (which has been bothering me since before Christmas). I had gone to Sedona thinking I would do a spa day and maybe shop up some turquoise jewelry. But, just like a cliche, Sedona gave me a lot more than that. Without question, it's the most beautiful place I've been so far.
I rented a little Airbnb for the week and I spent the time feeling like I could move more slowly, be more steady, and enjoy the scenery without feeling hurried. It was a restorative week, actually. I don't think I realized that's what I needed when I booked the apartment, but maybe the universe knew it was what I needed.