Started the day with Mike and Chris at Focus Climbing Center. I haven’t been rock climbing since I was a kid, so was really excited to try it again.

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Afterwards we head up towards Apache Junction to the Arboretum. We wandered around amongst the trees, and walked the main track right around.



We were keeping our eyes out for birds, and saw some North American Cardinals for the first time.


We also found an important bird area.


At the other side of the track we had to trek down through the rocks. Mum and I went first, because Mountain Lions are meant to go for the second in line. Sorry David!


A large part of the Arboretum is an ‘Australian Walkabout’, filled with trees and plants from home.


Some paths we would walk down would look exactly like the Australian bush – every plant was from AUS.


We found a suspension bridge, and like adults the first thing my parents did was run and jump and swing it as much as they could.


After the walk we drove to nearby Filly’s Roadhouse, where everyone in town was drinking, dancing and laughing. A cover band was playing next to a long live cowgirls sign, and the dance floor was filled with cowgirls and cowboys bedecked in boots and hats. Nan and Grandpa had a dance, she said it was the first time he had danced with her in 30 years!




Out the back there were red checked tablecoth-covered wooden tables where you could eat under the cacti and Superstition Mountains.


We realised we were really in cowboy territory when we saw this sign on the fence.



My family were keeping their eye out for a rich cowboy husband, but unfortunately the only one David told to dance with me made some excuse about having a bad knee and ran back to his bleach-blonde wife. No cowboy husbands today – but my Grandpa took me for a dance to make up for my broken heart.



Then it was time to order, and in typical Lani BBQ fashion I ordered a half rack of Baby Back BBQ ribs, fried chicken, deep fried zucchini with ranch dressing, housemade chilli, cornbread, texas toast, steak fries and potato salad.




Very disappointed I did not have room for Apple Pie.