“Let’s have some breakfast and then just go out for a little bit,” my husband coaxes, knowing that I am not feeling very well.
“It would be a shame to be here and not see it,” I agree. My body wants me to spend the day in bed, so I compromise by putting on comfy clothes. The wind has not died down overnight, and it is chilly outside.
We drive up to the Joshua Tree National Park visitor centre in the town of 29 Palms and start by buying the compulsory postcards. I’ve been sending them to my grandchildren along the way. I tell the cashier that we need advice, indicating that neither one of us is very mobile. She offers us a map and circles all the places we can visit by car and with short walks, the first being behind the centre.
The Oasis trail, onsite, has marked paths and more of the low, sparse vegetation we have seen everywhere, except for a few massive palm trees at the end of the first path. The plaque says something cute about how they arrived from another planet in the early 1900’s but I am too distracted by the cold winds and how frail I feel. I announce to Ric that I’m not up to walking today and we head back to the car where I recline my seat back and turn on the seat heaters. Praise be to modern technology.
Ric drives slow and I keep my camera ready for anything interesting and very soon it is apparent why Joshua Tree is such an famous place – the rock formations are out of this world. We opt to stay on the road and pull over for the best shots, and there are plenty.
“How did this happen?” I ask my former geographer husband. “How did these rocks get to be this way?”
Even he is stumped to explain, but I can hear his wheels turning and he mutters theories to himself, which makes me smile.
Our stops take us to a cholla garden with endless cacti, jumbo boulders, piles of rocks, climbing rocks, and a lookout point. Unlike Sedona, where I walked solo to the top of the lookout, Ric does the climbing while I wait in the truck. Even the promise of a view of water and salt cannot budge me today – I am feeling that bad.
So glad I came out today though. Distraction – especially the beauty of the Joshua Tree National Park – beats a day spent in bed.
Wish I had more details to share with you, but I’d be more than happy to hear from you about your experiences, and or knowledge. For instance, why is the Joshua tree called the Tree of Life?
(Note: I love how nature reflects life. I feel just like the Joshua trees pictured in the feature image – couldn’t stand up straight if I wanted to, lol.)