Speed shopping in the desert: Tucson 2014

A Tucson 2014 haiku:

New stone was desired
Too short time; distant travels
Winter delayed me

For some reason, my area of the country has been cursed as the dumping ground for winter’s fury. I was looking forward to Tucson just to get warm, but even there it was chilly. There was such a short time on the ground when I got there that I power-shopped with the cold efficiency of a leopard pouncing in from the underbrush to make a kill. Boom! Kent’s Tools and the acquisition of stuff for 80 student kits was conquered in less than an hour. One thing I have learned about going to Tucson: a strict budget tied to a well-organized shopping list is king.

Sadly, this year I didn’t have lots of “funny money” to spend — it was all business for me. But, that didn’t stop me from looking — which is one of the last remaining free things left in the world. It felt great to walk around in the midday sun, check out some “new” cutting rough at Electric Park, see some interesting tools (check out my May/June Cool Tools & Hip Tips column for more on that) and catch up with my friends.

Usually, I try to find a “trend” when I get to Tucson, but this year it was too short a time to tell, so I motored through my visit list and did the best I could in the time I had. Getting an extra day because of snow didn’t hurt, either, but there is never enough time it seems.

Here are some photo highlights from my adventure. Enjoy!

Diamond Pacific Lapidary, Helen Driggs

I always visit the big tent at Electric Park to see what’s new and amazing at Diamond Pacific Lapidary.

Momma Javellina and her babies, Helen Driggs

At the new “Rock Show” I saw these recycled steel Javellinas (collared peccaries for you nature geeks). They were so cleverly done — I have yet to see live ones, though.

The Jewelry Makers Field Guide, Helen Driggs

I can never pass a bookstore without stopping in — and was tickled to see my book, front and center as a “special selection” at the Barnes and Noble on Broadway.

Raptors on the Volleyball court, Helen Driggs

Yes, you can buy a dinosaur in Tucson. Here’s a fine selection of life-sized raptors to choose from — for the garden, maybe?

The "club show" feature fantastic mineral specimens, Helen Driggs

I had just enough time to visit the “Club Show,” aka The Tucson Gem and Mineral Show. The earth makes beautiful things…

Palm Trees and Blue skies: Inn Suites is always a great show for lapidary and mineral collectors.

Palm Trees and Blue skies: Inn Suites is always a great show for lapidary and mineral collectors.

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About Helen Driggs

Metalsmith, Artist, Writer, Maker of things. Former Senior Editor of Lapidary Jewelry Artist Magazine View all posts by Helen Driggs

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