and I mean that in a good way. Once upon a time there was a small town called Sunnyslope. It existed just north of the city of Phoenix. And I lived there when I was in the 7th grade. In 1959 the community was annexed by Phoenix, because it had not yet managed to incorporate itself as a town. I was living there and attending 7th grade when it happened.
On Sunday afternoon, March 15, 2015, I went back to take my afternoon walk through the heart of old Sunnyslope. It doesn’t look much like it did when I was a kid riding my bicycle all over the place. I went back because I remember there being some strange statues up there. So, for the sheer heck of it, I took my camera and went hunting. This is what I found.
Both sides of the Dunlap Avenue have these weird flat iron sculptures lining the sidewalks. There are several different “people” shown here, but the same figure is repeated at least four times in different locations.
They all have the same general form and size, but the holes cut into them are different, and the head shapes and objects they hold can be different. They look a lot like tribal African figures.
The sidewalk in front of John C. Lincoln Hospital has some large, rather strange murals (for lack of a better word) set into it. The first one I noticed was the word Sunnyslope stretched out over about 60 feet. I could not get the whole word into a single photo.
A long shot of John C. Lincoln Hospital–one of the nicest hospitals in the city. I was a patient there back in 1968 when I rolled a City Delivery van down a mountain slope on 19th Avenue. It was a rather amazing high speed accident, and I was very lucky to survive. When they pulled my battered and bleeding body from the wreck, the ambulance took me to this hospital–it was the closest at the time–located at about 2nd Street and Dunlap.
As I walked east along the sidewalk, I found this man lying there casually connected by this stream of breath or smoke to . . .
. . . a pair of disembodied lungs, and that is connected to . . .
this other man–a mirror image of the first, but facing the opposite direction. You have to admit it is strange to find disembodied lungs on the sidewalk in front of a hospital.
This flatman appears to be female.
This one is holding a wizard’s staff. You can tell that it’s magical because it has a large gem or orb of some type at the top.
And then I found footprints in the rock.
walking east some more My shadow got into the picture here. Do you think this flatman is a doctor with a stethoscope? It is in front of a hospital.
what’s this? A brewery in the heart of Sunnyslope? I never knew this place was here. I saw some people sitting on a small patio, drinking beer. I asked a couple if it was very good, and they assured me it was.
So I went inside. The Diamondbacks were on television, playing a Spring training game with the Giants.
There were many tables inside, but I sat down at the bar and asked for their least expensive brew. The bartender, Lisa, asked if I wanted dark or light. I said I didn’t care–give me something good. So she gave me these two samples.
They were both good, but I chose the dark. She told me it was Scottish ale.
I struck up a conversation with the man sitting next to me. It occurred to me that I should get a picture of me in this place–evidence he called it.
He took two, using my camera, of me standing beside the brewery logo on the wall. This became my picture of the day for March 15, 2015. I’m not really all that wildly happy, but I thought a laughing, gesturing Ken would be more interesting than me just standing there. Another coincidence? I wind up inside a bar on the day when I’m wearing the only t-shirt I own that has anything alcoholic/drinkable on it. This green stuff in the bottle on my shirt is probably absinthe, and of course, Cthulhu is a strange and weird god.
After about an hour in the bar, I paid my bill and continued my walk. As I reached the corner of 5-points where Dunlap intersects with 7th Street, and Cave Creek Road angles off to the northeast, I found a flagpole with two flags. The Stars and Stripes flag is on top, and the tricolor below it is that of the Italian Republic circa 1946. That makes sense because the flagpole was in front of a big Italian restaurant, that I did not photograph, but I did not know what flag it was at the time.
The restaurant was on the end of a little strip mall running perpendicular to the street. There were two rather bizarre businesses here–this bony barber shop . . .
and a “House of Fashion” where the ladies of Sunnyslope can acquire elegant and sexy dresses.
There are two fiveway intersections in the city of Phoenix. This one is at 7th Street and Dunlap with Cave Creek Road running off to the northeast. The other is at 7th Avenue and Van Buren with Grand Avenue running off to the northwest. This one is on the north side of the city. The other is like a mirror image 9 miles south and 2 miles west of it.
Another view looking toward the hills east of town–hills with sunny slopes for which the place may have been named.
I crossed Dunlap and started back to where I had left my car, about 3/4 of a mile away, and immediately found this very strange garage. I mean, who names a garage after a character from Alice in Wonderland? This struck me as weird because I fancy myself as a bit of a Mad Hatter, and have created my own Mad Hatter costume.
Walking west, I found this cowboy on the sidewalk, or perhaps he was a miner. The hills around Sunnyslope were once full of old mines dug by prospectors in the 19th century.
A glowing rock next to a pickaxe? Definitely a symbol of mining.
Another one of our flat friends. He must not have liked me taking his picture without permission, because at this point my right calf began to hurt, and I went lame. I would limp back to the car from here.
Reaching Central Avenue, I found this remindrance of today’s namesake. The Ides of March is famous for the assassination of Julius Caesar. Little Caesar is here located next to another location famous for blades in use.
On the corner of Dunlap and Central there is a small grocery that apparently features some rather exotic booze. Perhaps I should have gone in and purchased some Devil ale, but I resisted temptation.
From here I crossed the street, got back into my car, and returned to my home, having finished my tour of everything worth seeing in downtown Sunnyslope.
If you’ve ever found weird stuff in a small town, or even just a small section of the city, why not leave a comment?