by David Mendez
Love Letters To Tucson is an on-going project that is exactly what it sounds to be: Open letters from Tucsonans explaining just why they love the Old Pueblo, and why they insist upon living here in spite of the challenges of desert living, and the difficulty (and joy) of living in a city that's slightly off-kilter.
From Love Letters To Tucson:
I love you. It wasn’t love at first sight though. Rather, it was incredulity.
I first met you when I turned off I-10 to Tangerine Road on a black December night in 1998. It was desolate: no street lights; lots of humps in the road; and signs saying ‘Do not enter when flooded”.
“Did we come to the right place?” I asked my hubby from the driver’s seat. “This is the desert, isn’t it?” (I didn’t have a clue then about the monsoon season).
Tucson, I love your scrappiness and your charm. I love that you are not the tidiest nor most stylish of creatures. You are, to me, the quirky, crazy aunt of the family, the one who doesn’t care how messed up her hair is, or that her lipstick is smudged, or that her skirt is tucked into her underwear, because when she smiles everyone else smiles with her.
I love that you grew on me. I had my doubts, and in fact I almost called the whole thing off, remember? I got a seven-year-itch and wanted to move back ‘home’ to the U.K. But we found our feet, you and I, and now I’m proud to call you home.
This rather upsets my parents, who believed my hubby and me when we said our America adventure would only last five years at most. But love, as they say, changes everything.
If you're interested in reading more letters, learning more about the project, or contributing your own love letter, give Love Letters To Tucson a visit.