Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Aho, Arizona

Sun - Jan. 17th

On a little walk around our campground this morning, we spotted the leaf-cutter ants hard at work.

Here they have found a tree that has tiny little leaves
that they are able to carry whole without having to cut them up in little pieces they can manage. They take the leaves back to their nest to feed a fungus that lives there. Then they feed off the fungus. If they don't keep the fungus fed it dies. Then they have nothing to eat and they will die. We learned about them when we were in Peru.

In the afternoon we went in to Ajo to visit my Dad's cousin and her husband. They took us on a tour around Aho that was very interesting and informative. This is a picture of the Catholic church from the walkway across the city square.

This is a little Spanish mission started by the Jesuit priests. To the side is a little silver dome where they had telescope to study astronomy. Very advanced for that time. In the mission is a quaint little museum on the history of the town staffed by very knowlegeable volunteers from the community.
At one time, the world's largest copper mine was here at Aho. It has been closed for twenty years or so.

This pile is the leftovers from when they were mining. It is about a mile long by 3/4 mile wide and the center is filled with sludge. They are presently trying to get whatever other minerals they can from the mine. The black slag you may be able to see in the front is a glass that they grind up and use for sand blasting instead of sand. Their biggest customer is the navy. They use it to get the rust and barnacles off the ships before painting them. Sand has been found to cause some kind of lung disease like asbestos, so this is better.
John just informed me that they are closing the Roy Rogers Museum in Branson. I suppose kids nowadays don't even know who he is. It just doesn't seem right. We (his fans) aren't all dead yet! Anyway, happy trails to you, till we meet again. That was written by his wife, Dale Evans. Just one more trivia from John.

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