I'm Your Huckleberry

As most of you who have been in college at some point or another know, spring semester is like senioritis on crack. Motivation is at an all time low as everyone eagerly waits for school to let out and summer FINALLY begins.
March was an o.k. month. I can't recall anything super special about it, other than one trip. Reina and I drove 3 hours south to Tombstone, AZ. Now, if you haven't seen the movie with Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer, I suggest you stop reading this and get to watching. I grew up watching Tombstone as it was a staple movie in my family. Much like people have a staple food in their family, we had the 1993 classic western, Tombstone. The movie takes you back in time with an -almost- historically accurate tale of the Earp brothers, the infamous Doc Holiday, Big Nose Kate, Josephine and their challenges of living in the silver mining town of Tombstone.
Upon our arrival to the restored version of the original booming town of Tombstone near the border of AZ and Mexico, I was freaking out. Reina, on the other hand had no knowledge of the history of the town that was "too tough to die"- nor had she seen the movie. As we walked around the- still booming town we saw culture and history right before our eyes. Written on plaques all around the town were stories and snippets of historical relevance to the area. We got to see the exact spots where Vern and Morgan Earp were killed by the Clanton gang, in the street and the Oriental Bar. We were able to see photos of Geronimo and his family among other Native American artifacts. We were able to see the site of the OK Corral where the famous shoot out between Doc Holiday beside the Earp brothers and the Clanton Gang.
The experience was eye opening, but I have to say that the most intriguing experience I had, was when we visited the Bird Cage Theater. Doc Holiday was a famous poker player and was also one of the most stubborn men in history. The Bird Cage Theater was, well a theater, but also took on the role of saloon, gambling hall, and was equipped with "bird cages" where men could see accompaniment with women of the night- aka a brothel. This building is the only building on Allen Street, which is the main street in Tombstone, that wasn't destroyed in a fire. Being that it is the only true original building, means that if you want to really feel the history of Tombstone, that's where you should go. So Reina and I embarked on our conquest to see this historic testament to the true history of Tombstone, but were stopped dead in our tracks outside the entrance of the theater. We both were overcame with a strange feeling. One that made my head spin and my eyesight wonky. I stood their swaying and blinking to try to readjust my site and collect myself. Reina asked if I felt it too, and that's when we knew we were feeling something to be noted. As we collected ourselves and proceeded into the building, the feeling only got stronger. We pushed through it and listened to the guide tell us the history of the building, pointing out some of the most prevalent bullet holes in the saloon area. We only saw that saloon area because it was the only part of the building you didn't have to pay to see, and to be honest, with the way we were feeling about this place it was probably a good idea we didn't do the self guided tour. We walked around the room looking at all the artifacts and items of historical relevance. We reached a polyphone that was in the corner of the room under the stairs leading to the bird cages. I felt as if the weight of the world was on me and I began to feel nauseous and light headed. As the room spun Reina and I agreed it was time to go and left the building. It wasn't until ten minutes after and we had walked a quarter of a mile away from the building that we felt semi-okay.
For the rest of our time in Tombstone we couldn't shake the feeling of our experience back at the Bird Cage. After we left Tombstone, Reina and I stopped at a Mexican place in Tucson to meat up with some family members of mine I have not seen in years and some I have not met. We spent the next two and a half hours talking to my cousin Josh, his wife and their young son. It was nice to catch up.
Since our Tombstone trip, Reina and I have one on two other trips as the end of the school year had closed in on us. For a weekend getaway we drove six and a half hours to El Paso, Texas to see my best friend Micenley who is in the army and stationed there. We had a blast and didn't want to come back to Phoenix. We had such a great time with them, two weekends after she and I met up with Micenley and his friend Jared for a camping trip outside of Silver City, New Mexico. It has been such a great thing to be able to have seen Micenley so often, especially since I don't know the next time I'll see him. I got a nasty sunburn on that trip which I am hoping has jump started my summer tan... ha ha.
Now that we are back in Phoenix for our last week of school, Reina and I are busy packing our lives away and trying to mentally prepare for the summer ahead. It is going to be hard splitting up for months at a time... I already can't wait to see her. Hopefully we will talk all the time and keep our friendship strong. I am hoping very much that we will be reunited at the end of the summer and moving to the same school together. If not, the fall semester will be lonely without her. Here's to hoping... and here's to a great summer. And here's to all the memories we have made together, all the state lines we've crossed, all the camping we've done, all the beautiful sights we've seen and the friendship we got out of it all.

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