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Dear Dad,

The man who came to fix my plumbing during the Chicago freeze had never heard of the pipes in the Great Basin Desert. The only basins he was familiar with were the sinks and laundry tubs he used in the plumbing work. I told him about the wide, flat expanse covering many states in the American West, the second largest desert in the United States. Remember when Mom and I did that road trip?

You weren't with us, but you should have been. Like I told the man. I said, "My father is a plumber like you," and I described your plumbing business in Spokane, but that was by way of informing him about Nancy Holt's Sun Tunnels. I said, "My dad knows everything about pipes and the subterranean world of our cities. He also enjoys art."

I don't know why I keep calling him "the man." He wore a white T-shirt and baggy jeans. He was about forty, and kept his mask on the whole time.

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