My mother was born and raised here in Arizona, mostly in the Valley (Mesa and Tempe) but also in Patagonia for a while. Arizona is home to her and I don't think she'll ever leave. She is a desert girl at heart.
My dad, on the other hand, is from Caldwell, Idaho, a rural town outside of Boise in Canyon County (abbreviation: 2C). He spent his youth working out in the fresh Idahoan air, helping my grandpa with his masonry business, carrying hod and laying brick. He's a farm boy through and through.
My Haney grandparents and one of my dad's brothers still live there in Caldwell after all these years (nearly 50). Not to mention, his twin brother lives in Meridian which is about half-way between Boise and Caldwell.
Basically, half of my roots are nestled deep in the fertile soil of Idaho while the other half are accustomed to soaking up whatever water they can find in the desert clay of Arizona. Though I'm usually more inclined to identify with my Arizona half, Idaho does comprise a large part of my heritage. There's a portion of my heart that loves the rural simplicity and small town feel of Treasure Valley. You see snippets of it here, like out in Queen Creek and Gilbert, but in Idaho it's mostly farmland. From the air, it looks like a patchwork quilt of greens, yellows and browns.
I hadn't been back there in over a decade and I was itching for some cool northern air and greenery. So when my cousin announced his upcoming wedding and I happened to have some leftover flight credit that needed to be used, I jumped at the chance to fly to Boise with my dad. And that's what we did last weekend.
After a horrendously bumpy flight (we hit a massive thunderstorm), we were greeted by Grandma and Grandpa Haney at the Boise airport. Before meeting my dad's brother Brett for dinner, we swung by BSU to catch a glimpse of the Smurf Turf. We got much more than we bargained for -- the gate to the field was wide open. So we walked right in and got some pictures. We spent about 10 minutes on the field before someone came and politely kicked us out.
|My grandparents and me. I'm basically camouflaged.|
After dinner, we headed to Brett's home in Meridian were we stayed during our trip. He and his wife Teri were the most gracious of hosts to us. Plus, they have a beautiful home.
The next day, we made our way out to 2C, but not before stopping at the building site for the new Meridian temple. It will be up on that hill.
My grandparents' house looks exactly the same as I remember it. I had no trouble spotting it right away as we drove down Linden Street. My grandpa built this house, of course.
This is the view from their home. It hasn't changed much, except for the fields that now grow corn used to grow hay. How would you like waking up to this picturesque scene every morning?
My dad's sister Michelle and her son Colby drove up from Salt Lake for the wedding as well. It was like a mini Haney reunion. We all gathered around for pictures outside. It's not often we all get to hang out in Idaho together.
|Can you tell the difference between my dad and his twin? Hint: my dad's holding the Yorkie, Zoey.|
We went to downtown Caldwell to see my dad's other house on Canyon Hill, the Casa Valdez tortilla factory and some other memorable sites. We also stopped to take pictures of the alpacas that live down the street from Grandma and Grandpa. They were hilarious!
After lunch, we went to about three different Ross's to find my cousin Colby some dress shoes for the wedding. This was when I discovered that all Ross's are the same. It was severely disappointing. I thought the ones in Idaho would have different crap from the ones here. No such luck.
We had Five Guys burgers for dinner and I pretty much went right to sleep once I got home. I was bushed from all the sight-seeing and Ross-ing. We did video chat with Dill and the kids via WiiU. That was pretty fun.
Next time I'll tell you about my fun adventures in the city of Boise.