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“A big grinning Adventure Guide with an old soul from Arizona’s desert.”
JD: Bethany, where are you currently located?
BA: Scottsdale AZ.
JD: And what does Scottsdale have to offer?
BA: To be honest, I used to hate the desert. I thought it was ugly and boring. The power of nature is undeniable. As I spent time exploring the outdoors here, my mind was completely changed. The desert might be plain or boring at first glance – but have you ever seen the desert in bloom? It’s incredible. I have never felt more at home. It’s beautiful and I love the community that’s been created here. Downtown Scottsdale also has a lot of cool spots you can easily walk to. Such a fun place.
JD: How do you get money? Are you employed?
BA: Yes! I work as a Trail and Adventure Guide for Arizona Outback Adventures.
JD: Sounds like a dream job.
BA: It is. Best part is – I am in my office when I’m outside.
BA: I know right? Also… I am a barista when I’m home from trips.
JD: What would say is the best part about being a Trail and Adventure Guide?
BA: The fact that I get to experience the outdoors with people who haven’t had a lot of time to experience it. I get to teach them and learn with them. All of my time spent outdoors is a plus. I meet some of the coolest people and get to hear their stories while showing them the most beautiful places. It’s pretty rad.
JD: What parks do you work in?
BA: I work in the coolest places like Havasupai, Grand Canyon NP, Zion NP, Bryce NP, Canyonlands NP, Capitol Reef NP, Arches NP, and Joshua Tree NP.
JD: Those are some incredibly beautiful places.
BA: Oh my, they have stolen my heart. My favorite places are Havasupai and Canyonlands. I like Havasupai for the beauty and culture. It’s also in the Grand Canyon where geology is CRAZY – so many gems. Canyonlands is a huge playground and not as popular as the other national parks which is cool. I get to run around without seeing people. It’s peaceful and the geology is insane. Utah is extremely unique.
JD: If I find myself in need of an adventure guide, how do I find you?
BA: Oooo! You can request guides through Arizona Outback Adventures… just find a trip through our website – call them and tell them you want me! I want you too!
“I play piano which calms and revives my soul.”
JD: Any books you can recommend?
BA: All the Light We Cannot See and Into the Wild, they are both amazing.
JD: Why are they amazing?
BA: I’ve always loved war books and movies because of the stories of survival in the worst imaginable times. To hear of how people have found hope in war is a marvel. All the Light We Cannot See is a bit less action-oriented than I usually read. It follows two young people through their lives during WWII. It’s real, raw, and keeps you intrigued. Into the Wild is the story of a boy who tries to make a living in the Alaskan bush and it follows his adventures before and during his time there. The part that I enjoyed most is the psychology behind why he might have gone, his relationships with people, and the way his mind works. I studied Psychology/Behavioral Health so my mind was on full blast with ideas of why he is the way he is. So many good things!
JD: There is always music playing around here at Shiner. How much does music affect your life?
BA: Music makes the world go round. I am in love with the emotions a person can feel through relating to music and I play piano which calms and revives my soul. I also believe that nature plays music. The sounds we hear are an expression of growth in the earth. It’s powerful and words are meaningful.
“A puppy, a book, my hammock, a lion I have tamed…”
JD: What is the last song you listened to?
BA: Ain’t No Sunshine – Bill Withers
JD: That is a classic.
BA: You bet. I love his voice and the sound of the song.
JD: How did you get into soul music?
BA: I’d say I’m just into music in general. I love soul music because the words are usually quite relatable and it’s good to groove to.
JD: Best movie ever?
JD: Okay, what is your real favorite movie?
BA: Gladiator – are you not entertained by my answer?
JD: Desert Island… you get 5 “non-survival” items, what are they?
BA: A puppy, a book, my hammock, a lion I have tamed, and cards so I can become a master at poker then win the lottery.
JD: Wait, what?
BA: Haha, okay yes, that’s weird. I just want to become really good at poker, so I have a cool skill. But I won’t win all my money from playing. Maybe I’ll win the lotto randomly. Who knows? I’m a big dreamer. If I had the money, I’d travel a lot and start an orphanage.
JD: You love puppies, don’t you?
BA: I want a dog more than anything. I travel too much right now and they’re a huge responsibility. I want to give them everything, I just can’t right now. Do you have a dog I can dog sit?
JD: Scottsdale is a little far for me but if I am ever in town…
JD: Is a puppy your spirit animal?
BA: No. I am a panther.
JD: Why a panther?
BA: No need to explain, I just am one.
JD: Well, alright then.
JD: What’s the best thing about people?
BA: I absolutely LOVE seeing random kind acts when I’m out and about. Something as simple as helping a stranger who looks like they’re struggling, giving up your seat, something that radiates love and leaves the person feeling valued. Pay it forward even when no one is looking. I have caught those moments – seeing kindness and love when they didn’t think anyone was looking. It’s the most beautiful thing. Another thing that I love experiencing is someone doing something they never thought they could do. When we go to Havasupai, there’s a pretty crazy ladder we have to climb down to get to Mooney Falls. If you’re afraid of heights, it will get your blood pumping. Most of my guests are horrified going down. I’ve had a few of them crying while we hike down and I encourage them. As we reach the bottom, the joy on their face is priceless. When we push ourselves to do something we think we cannot do, it’s huge. It’s life changing.
JD: Words of wisdom?
BA: If you want to do something, do it. Do what gets your heart racing. Do that thing you love.