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Sitting outside in sunny downtown Mesa, Arizona. I’m following doctor’s orders, getting a ration of sunshine for Vitamin D. So, I sip an iced coffee from Jarrod’s Tea, Coffee, and Gallery.
The Mesa Brew Fest was cancelled, but lots of people are walking and sitting outdoors drinking in each establishment’s designated drinking area, patio, beer garden. Inside, people from teens to 70ish, I estimate, are filling Jarrod’s with needed business. You see, he just knocked a hole in one wall and doubled his floor space. So, he is doing the small business high wire act in a historically tough for business downtown.
I walked around the corner, noting the bustling Chupacabra Tap Room. Their theme developed for this beer fest was “pie” for 3/14. They had multiple pie flavored beers and ciders. So, I enjoyed a raspberry cider from Cider Corps, a US Marine combat-veterans owned cidery half a block away. Can’t get much more local.
This place is packed inside, maybe 40 people cheek to cheek with loud, friendly conversation competing with the streamed music. The beer garden also pretty full, people at every table. I’m at the top of the age distribution. I step back outside and the fenced-in patio is also pretty full, around 20 people at the tables.
A woman around 60 with a Chihuahua greets me, saying she needed a t-shirt like mine, from the El Paso minor league baseball team, the Chihuahuas. She is annoyed by the stupid cancellation of the street fair beer fest: “Wash your damn hands and wear a mask if you are so worried!”
A half-hour later, the place has completely gone to the dogs. Five of them are now here: one medium, the rest Chihuahua-size but different breeds. Now a sheepdog showed up. So, we have a Chihuahua, miniature Australian Shepherd, small dachshund, small long-haired dachshund, plus an all-white boxer, and full-size sheepdog.
All those dogs and their people are enjoying the day and getting along famously. ‘Merica!Published in