Curiosity is the lust of the mind. – Thomas Hobbes
Legend tells us of a secret hideaway of bandits and bootleggers in the hills southeast of Sedona. Getting there is as much of a mystery as the discovery. The unmarked trail takes you into a ravine and through a dry river wash, and the cairns offer reassurance that you are on the right path.
While the views are mesmerizing, the narrow, slick-rock cliff is an intimidating long way down. Waiting will invite hesitation, so we don’t stop. We shimmy around the edge with carefully placed hands and feet and continue until a glimpse of the cave offers a nudge to keep going.
I imagine the smell of a campfire and the scuffle of cowboys boots from those who keep guard. I picture money bags against the cave walls, crumbled wanted posters for the fire, and bottles empty of moonshine. There is a lookout to the east in addition to the unobstructed view of Sedona and the valley between.
It is a perfect vantage point in the event of a sting from bounty hunters and sheriffs. And it is breathtaking!
True or not true, its fun to let the imagination recreate a time we are familiar with because of novels and marathons of western movies.
In retrospect, evidence will lead you to understand a greater story to ponder. The natives call it Shaman’s Cave as it was a place of spirituality and healing. Healing bandits? Ha. The irony convinces me that maybe it just comes down to harmony, and a place is what you make it.
For me, it is an unexplained spirituality where my presence is woven into the stories past. I walk quietly and listen to the wind that speaks and search for messages to help me tell their stories. And that he in my we?
Always an attempt at a getaway.
Opposites DO attract…
Humbled again by this beautiful place I also call home.