Monday, March 23, 2009

ME AND THE HUBS VISIT ANZA-BORREGA & JULIAN...SHEER HEAVEN...

These are kinda sorta in reverse order because I STILL haven't figgered out my blog's way of configuring pictures...it's only been a little over 300 posts...give me some time eh?...Anyway, the hubs and I took a road trip to Anza-Borrega State Park and to Julian (a little mountain community) on Saturday. AB State Park is a beautiful desert known for its wild flowers in the Spring. We were about one weekend too late, but that didn't stop us...intrepid day trippers that we are. We hopped in his trusty truck and headed down Route 86 past the Salton Sea and we were on our way. The above picture is of my favorite cactus, which is an ocotillo (pronounced oko-tee-yo). It's a profusion of long, spiny sticks that look as though a firework has been caught frozen at the point of explosion. I love them. This weekend, we caught them in bloom. Their blossoms are bright orange and explode at the tips of the branches. Here, the sun light was sneaking between the branches...a tip I learned from the Dear Sweet One....thx Abby.
This is Peter waiting for me down by the truck. I love the pops of red...his shirt, the ladder, even the tail lights....What he was SAYING was, "I don't think you're going to find any barrel cactus up there"....but look at his body language...what he was THINKING, and later confirmed, was this, "How in the heck are you going to get DOWN from that height with your bad leg!?!"....and he was correct in being concerned....but I did it....
I love the color of red when it appears in nature....in the Midwest, you typically have to wait until the Fall to see the color red in great quantities, but here in the desert, we get it in the spring, as much as we're going to, anyway....so I snapped this little shrub...
This is desert sage. It blossoms this time of year. The blossoms are bright yellow and charming as all get out. They blossom a couple of inches above the actual plant so from a distance, they actually hover over the sage on rather invisible little stalks. After the sage dies out, it disconnects from the stalk, loses all of its greenery, and tumbles away....that's right....this is a tumbleweed in its embryonic form...whodda thunk they used to be so pretty and vibrant, right? Yep, this is a dying joke ready to happen....my kids will get that.....

Peter snapped this as I was wandering aimlessly looking for a place to take a picture. He said, "That's it, I took five, let's go".....okay......
Detail of the orange blossoms of the above mentioned ocotillo....
Prickly Pear cactus...these are edible and delicious.....
I loved the way the light was captured around the spines of this little cactus....the sun light seemed to linger around them...

Ditto on this particular cactus. Beautiful...especially with the green grass around it...so rare and fleeting...I suppose that's part of the beauty of this scene for us...we know that in a matter of perhaps days, this will be brown and back to the typical desert typography that we know, and typically love, so this fertile, green look is so unusual and beautiful to us, we had to experience it.
The beautiful ocotillo's typical fan shape...
Detail of the ocotillo branches reaching toward the blue sky....isn't that amazing???
Here is a carpet of wild, yellow flowers, a border of ocotillo and a backdrop of mountains bordered by the blue sky...I couldn't resist snapping it....
For you litch-a-chure buffs...

I have a fierce confession...one of my single most favorite things on the planet is my husband's face. And this is another truth: I absolutely hate...after five and half years of marriage...to turn the lights off at night...because I adore looking at it...I love that mug....so I have great fun playing with it after I snap a picture of it...I love editing and tweaking with my limited skills (and software), but this is the "after" picture of the one I took below. The hubs has a great face. He could be from the 40s or earlier....I have often wondered if he wasn't born a couple or more decades too late anyway...

This is while we were in Julian..duh, thanks Deb...it's a little "apple community"...that's what they grow there and and that's what they market...all things apple....I like that sign 'cause it reminds me of the hubs and I..."nuts and honey"....he's nuts and I'm honey....well, it made sense in my head when I snapped the picture....
This is where we go to get our favorite candy...we call it "bird bones" because that's the sound it makes when you chew on it...don't ask....Peter came up with it....

So...it's now Monday and back to the typical grind...Day trips are fun and nourishing and good for the soul. We were jazzed for Church on Sunday and had a great dinner with his daughter and her family last evening...all in all, a great weekend filled with love, nature, good food, great family, and all things wonderful....hope you had the same.... :)

12 comments:

Cindy said...

I wanted to go!!! Glad you had a good day. The pictures are amazing. I love to go to Jullian and smell all the apple pies. I feel like I am in a small New England town when there. It is amazing to drive up the mountain from the desert and go around a curve and you are in New England.
Two awesome road trips in one week!
Life is good, aint it?

The Katzbox said...

Oh heck yea. And you are dead on correct about that New England feel...Peter has said more than once about how that town resembles towns he's known in Maine, where he's from.

Another time...and we'll spend the day in Julian...go to those little shops that guys don't like...we'll get lunch...split a pie...the whole shebang.

You know what I want to do Cindy...I want to go to Slab City, out there by the Salton Sea...it was featured on Into The Wild...it's an old hippie community...anyway, I think it sounds like fun...but we'll have to pack heat...*hahahahhaha* unless you have martial arts skills that I don't know about....or Uncle Joe has "people" that we can borrow....

Eli Bowman said...

Those are some cool pictures...I honestly felt like I was there as I read this post.

Cindy said...

Slab City...we do not need to pack "heat"..hippies are peaceful characters. old hippies are really peaceful characters. I will wear flowers in my hair, and bring my best pipe (kidding) ;)

The Katzbox said...

Ahhhhh Eli Eli Eli....I miss you so much!!!!! I can't wait to see you. You would so love this stuff honey...You would eat it up with a spoon...totally...there is enchantment in the desert...usually at twilight, but it's here....

Cindy, it's not the old hippies that worry me...stoners typically don't have the motivation to commit crimes...it's the "new wave" of criminals that irritate me..."bring your best pipe"....HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
...you silly girl....but we could still wear flowers in our hair....and I've got hippie clothes...you know I do...you've seen my taste in furniture girlfriend.....remember Anthropologie? hahahahahahahah

Cindy said...

The people in slab city (from what I have heard) settled down on government land and do not pay rent because no one really cares because the land is so useless. I want to see the guy who built a shrine to Jesus out of straw bales,mud and lots of paint. I hear he has been working on it for over 20 years everyday.
I did remember (after I said hippies were gentle) that Charles Manson and his followers were "hippies" living in the desert. So I hereby retract that statement.
I want Eli from Ohio to come too!

Eli Bowman said...

Heck, I'll go!

Cindy said...

Eli...you are in! You have to not be polite around me though because I want the true you I have heard so much about. I need the laughs. You and your brother would really be fun!

The Katzbox said...

Oh my gosh Cindy, you would have to pack a change of clothes because they don't stop until I pee...I MEAN it...they are brutal...and then, after I pee, they hi-five each other...they are very bad....very very bad...but very very funny....there have been several times when I had to pull off the road because I could freaking drive, I was laughing too hard...that's bad...so, be forewarned...of course, it could just be me....but at the very least, you will chuckle... a lot....

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