Tuesday, January 19, 2010

"LIKE A STORM IN THE DESERT..."

I'm recovering. From what? From spending several hours down in the Coachella Valley, first at a doctor's appt and then spending 5 hours...FIVE HOURS...at the courthouse in Indio (a city in the Coachella Valley) taking care of a speeding ticket I've had since 2006.

The doctor is ordering me to go to a Ear/Nose/Throat specialist for my "adam's apple" that I'm growing. Whatever. I asked him what he's looking for and he shrugged and said, "Hey, I stay in my own specialty. I don't venture guesses." Well...thanks for having me drive down here for that...

The courthouse fiasco was well and good. That's probably a post in and of itself. Five hours. I deserved it, I suppose, for letting my ticket go for almost four years. The only reason I'm taking care of it now is because my license finally expired and I can't renew it until I clean up this ticket mess. So....there you go. An unintended consequence of having a warrant out for your arrest is: one becomes an excellent driver. EXCELLENT!

Also, it's raining. Monsoon-type raining. The desert can't handle the rain. Much like the military can't handle the truth...you know, in that movie with Jack Nicholson...whatever, it sounded way cool in my head when I heard it...

Indio was flooded...big, muddy swirling eddies of water right there in the streets, typically the intersections. I'm thankful for my little SUV with the truck frame...it got me through the floods, but not without some trepidation...Did you know that the leading cause of death in the desert is drowning? I know, it's counter-intuitive isn't it? There's just no where for the water to go when it rains. The ground doesn't absorb it like the heartland does...like it's supposed to...like the Good Lord meant for it to do...no, the desert ground just lets it accumulate right there on top until it spills over the sidewalks and streets and yards and eaves and everything. The upside to all of this? It's absolutely stunning. The clouds, mist and fog on the mountains look absolutely Biblical. When I describe it to my mother, I assume the deep Appalachian accent of her aunt (my great-aunt) Merble (real name) and say, "Oh, honey, it just looks like Moses is a-talkin' to God on the mount up thar!"

It's really very dramatic and lovely. On the way home, I pulled over and snapped pictures on the way up the mountain. Loverly indeed, but difficult to capture with a camera. I also snapped a picture of my groovy boots that kept my feet warm and dry and allowed me to walk through puddles with confidence AND a goofy grin-a combination that is hideously annoying to others when performed by a woman "of a certain age". Let this be my legacy to my children and grand children: Never let your age dictate your behavior. There!
These photos are only at a little over 2,000 feet. You can imagine as I drove up to 5,000 how pretty it must have looked, but it was getting to dark for me to get out and take pictures...plus, I'm a wuss because it was cold. Even I have my limits.

The above photo shows sunlight hitting the top of a bank of clouds that I could see where I was on the mountain side, but I don't think the people in the Valley could see it. Bonus to driving up so far, I suppose....
In the above photo is Palm Desert and the southern end of Rancho Mirage. Palm Springs is way up and to the left in the photo at the base of far mountain range. That's one of the switchbacks I take going up the mountain. That's how low the misty clouds were. And they were fast. They moved like smoke. It was great.
And lest we not forget my knee high, rubber boots. You can see how wet my pant legs were at the bottom from puddle forging. When will I learn? On hindsight, I should have tucked my pant legs into the boots....well, that comes from living in a desert for almost 9 years and never having rain to speak of....next time....

4 comments:

nancy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cindy said...

I can not believe you were so close to my house and did not call me. :( I live 10 minutes from that courthouse.

Emmy Slusser said...

Loved the pictures, mom! And, you are so dead you didn't call Cindy!

The Katzbox said...

Cindy, forgive me. I was there for 5 hours and it was so late when I got out of there and the streets were FLOODING in Indio, I had to get my butt over that mountain before dark. I owe you one girlfriend.

I can not even look at that little frowny face...it kills me....

Next week, Cindy. I'm coming down!!! Let's do lunch!!! You pick the place!!!