I flew out of DC Thursday evening, arriving in Tucson around 10:30 MST. Roger and Raymond picked me up at the airport and drove me back to their house, where Roger had a wonderful soup waiting–a particularly special treat after the light and tasteless airline fare and worse, hurried airport Taco Bell meal during my layover in Houston. After eating, we all relaxed in the spa [sigh] before turning in for the evening.
[more pix] Friday morning we traveled west, stopping first at the lookout point at Gates Pass, and continuing on to the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, a combination botanical garden, zoo, aviary, and natural history museum, where we spent most of the day. Friday night was one of Roger’s incredible dinners, topped off by a flourless chocolate cake he’d baked for his own birthday (two days later, but which we needed to start eating since it was too rich to wait to eat all of it on Sunday).
[more pix] Saturday we drove south, stopping off first at the Mission St. Xavier del Bac, and continuing to the artist town of Tubac, where we had lunch and (mostly) window-shopped. I saw a lot of things I’d have liked to buy, had I unlimited funds, including some beautiful tile work done in the style of petroglyphs. We returned home for a light supper and then went to see a terrific production of Tosca at the Arizona Opera.
Sunday was Roger’s birthday. We started later in the day, and did some local geocaching. After a quick trip to the supermarket for tequila, orange juice and munchies, we spent a relaxing afternoon and early evening drinking margaritas, soaking in the spa, and listening to ABBA, early Celine Dion, k.d. lang, and the soundtrack from Moulin Rouge. Then we finished the day with a delicious sushi dinner. Roger says it was his best birthday.
Roger wants me to move to Tucson. I can’t say I’m not tempted. Of course, I saw the city at one of the best possible times, probably… warm, sunny but not oppressively hot days; cool, clear nights; many of the cacti in bloom, and with oranges and lemons on the trees. And Roger and Raymond were wonderful hosts.
Of course, the suggestion that I move isn’t really about the city itself. The request comes more from the relationship that he and I have forged, initially online as fellow beta-testers in The Sims Online and There, with in-game relationships between our avatars that have migrated, to some degree, into the real world. We’re more than friends, but perhaps something less than lovers, though there certainly are strong feelings of love, support and mutual enjoyment of our time together. Still, he and Raymond have the primary relationship–which I absolutely respect–and while I think we’re all comfortable with the ways in which I’ve entered their lives, I don’t know that it would be as comfortable with me living nearby. I started to feel–though maybe this was my own internalization of feelings I haven’t completely resolved–that by the end of the fourth day, Raymond was ready for me to leave; certainly there was no overt hostility on his part, as he’s a wonderfully sweet man, but I did find myself starting to suspect that he resented or was disrupted by my real-life intrusion into their lives. And Roger himself admits that while he has his life partnership with Raymond, and would like to see me have the same kind of love of my own, he can at the same time be jealous of my other attachments.