Perhaps U.S. News & World Report is onto something. In the magazine’s March 22 issue, it hyped Scottsdale as one of the five most peaceful places to vacation in April.
Who would have guessed?
Usually the Mayhem Index in Scottsdale is fairly constant. A wide variety of murders, thugs, thieves and out-ofcontrol drivers keeps things interesting for tourists and locals alike.
Yet the magazine polled travel agents to see where they send clients who crave peaceful and quiet destinations. The agents said they dispatch frill-seekers to the serene destinations of Aspen, Colo.; Napa Valley, Calif.; Aruba; Hawaii — and Scottsdale.
Apparently, travelers want to experience our mild weather and great views of the Sonoran Desert from $625-anight resort suites.
"Temps are in the mid-70s — ideal for golf on one of 200 area courses," the magazine stated. "And spring is the right time to see the desert. Wildflowers explode, and coyotes — but not college kids — are out and about."
U.S. News glossed over bodies in the desert, package bombs exploding and armed smugglers called "coyotes" stuffing undocumented immigrants into drop houses.
For the most part though, the magazine’s prediction of a peaceful April has held true — so far. A quick recap:
April 1 — City diversity director Don Logan began his second day back on the job after more than a month recovering from a mail-bomb attack. The crime remains unsolved.
April 2 — More than 2 inches of rain fell, causing extensive flooding in the northern section of the city. OK, rain isn’t exactly mayhem, but it’s not exactly sunny 70-degree weather, either.
April 3 — Two men forced their way into a woman’s apartment, took her purse and raped her at gunpoint. The rape marked the second in a week. Both remain unsolved.
April 4 — Peacefulness.
April 5 — The City Council approved more than $1 million to improve security at six city buildings. "It’s not something that anyone wants to do, but it’s something that we must do," said Mayor Mary Manross.
April 6 — Calmness.
April 7 — More than 20 officers from three law enforcement agencies began a 24-hour special enforcement along Loop 101 in Scottsdale, a stretch of freeway on which 10 people died during 2002 and 2003.
Scottsdale cops alone ticketed 156 motorists exceeding the 65-mph speed limit. The only real surprise was that the top speed they clocked was only 96 mph.
Thursday — Joggers found the body of a man who had been bound and shot in the head along a road near Camelback Mountain, next to Scottsdale in Paradise Valley. The crime remains unsolved.
Friday — The remains of a woman killed five months earlier was found in the desert north of Pinnacle Peak Road, just outside of Scottsdale in Phoenix. The primary suspect committed suicide months earlier.
Saturday — Peacefulness.
Sunday — Tranquility.
Monday — Quietness.
Tuesday — Calmness.
Today — A day full of opportunities.