Theme ~ My 50 Years in America
I came to California in 1972, , after a cross-country trip in VW Bug with a guy from Philly, who had moved to Sacramento, and whose ad I answered. His name was John, and fortunately for me, he was extremely nice and easy to get along with. My first view of California, after we crossed the California border at Needles, was the great Mojave desert.
I still remember the first time I saw water for sale at a desert gas station ~ 25 cents a gallon ~ and knew I had arrived in a different world from the wet and humid East Coast I just left behind.
In 2005, my husband and I bought our home here in the canyon and at first we drove back and forth to Los Angeles a lot. The trip takes you through a part of the Mojave Desert called the Antelope Valley and the towns of Lancaster and Palmdale. Here are a few things you may see along the way:
On the way down the mountain to the small town of Mojave, we pass this truck. In spring, flowers grow from the engine compartment.
If you stop and get out of your car, you may come upon a lizard, like this one. Hopefully, you will not encounter the Mojave rattlesnake, or Mojave green, as it's called around here, the most poisonous snake in North America.
On the other hand, encountering a road runner who just caught a snake would be a fun experience.
California poppies color the desert orange in spring, covering acres upon acres with their lovely flowers.
Something else that covers acres and acres in the desert are airplanes. The airplane boneyard outside the town of Mojave is huge; the planes are left here to be dismantled, or just left, so many of them. I have only seen a small portion of this boneyard, and it is an amazing sight.
After you leave the town of Mojave, you pass a sign for Silver Queen Road, which appeals to my sense of both romance and adventure. A silver mine, but who was the queen?
Looking for an entrance to the mine, I found an opening into the mountain, framed in wood, old wood. It's difficult to see, but it is located to the left in the above picture.
One day, on our way home from Lancaster, we stopped at this casino, just to check it out. They had no slot machines, just a group of rather sad looking desert people gathered around a card table. There was nothing for us there, but I left with this picture. I think it is pretty cool with its patriotic colors of red, white, and blue. And that sky!
Can't tell you how much I like the truck with flowers growing out of the engine compartment. What kind of casino doesn't have slot machines?!ReplyDelete
Love the pictures Inger. I lived in a very different climate before transplanting, and the desert's delights never get old.ReplyDelete
A great group of pictures. Those poppies are neat. I have to buy mine. Ha.ReplyDelete
I thoroughly enjoy your stories and pictures of the desert. Dry, yes, but lively too. We are not desert-dry up here, but we can have summers with little rain.ReplyDelete
Hope you have a wonderful day.
Blessings and Bear hugs!
D for Delicious!!ReplyDelete
Any chance we could see the desert in full bloom with California Poppy? I love them and grew them here until the humid/wet/foggy east coast did them in ~~~ sad!
What ever happened to John from Philly? Do you know?
I'm going to google your area ~~ I'm so intrigued!
I was raised in Arizona and made a few trips across the desert into CA. It is a pretty desolate area, and one in which one would hate to be stranded without plenty of water. Lovely photos brought back a plethora of memories!ReplyDelete
Well we drive thru Needles often... love your pictures...ReplyDelete
You show us the beauty of the desert.ReplyDelete
Play off the Page
thanks for all the photos of the desert, that is the only way i will ever see a desert. love that water sign and am enjoying your story. i just told it to hubby.ReplyDelete
I've seen roadrunners before, when we visited friends in Desert Hot Springs, near Palm Springs. Neat little guys to see. Not as tall as I imagined from the Wiley Coyote cartoons, but fast!ReplyDelete
Love those orange poppies, too!
Side note: when I first saw that 'last stop for XXX miles. Get your water here' sign, I imagined being stranded in the hot dry desert with no water. (I had come from the east coast as well)
In my minds eye, You captured Cali perfectly in this blog post - because as a midwesterner, my first trip to California just left me perplexed most of the time....its like civilization is trying to get a foothold there, but keeps quitting, and you see every town in different stages of that...? I dont know if my explanation makes sense, but it does to me, a midwesterner...!ReplyDelete
i think the desert would definitely take some getting used to. :)ReplyDelete
I love your photos. Though I live in a Northern Winter land now, I was born in the desert so this post hit home. And the pics are just lovely.
Yes, water is a precious commodity out here. As you know now. I can also imagine that it was more sparsely populated in 1972 than it is now.ReplyDelete
Dear Inger, this post reminds me of the line "from sea to shining sea." You went from the East to the West Coast--from the Atlantic to the Pacific. So your life as you will share it with us is going to span the continent. That's exciting to me. I've spent most of my life here in the mid-West. I'll love about what you've seen and done and experienced on those two coasts. Peace.ReplyDelete
What an incredible post! The airplane graveyard is fascinating and your pics are terrific. This is a great tale that I'll pick up on and come back to. Hopping on the A-Z.ReplyDelete
Love your pics. My loves are the high desert, Northern New Mexico, and the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. What's your secret for getting so many comments?ReplyDelete
PS One day when we were living in our rickety old motor home somewhere in a desert in the southwest I watched a roadrunner catch an unwary bird and eat the whole thing. Gory, yes, but absolutely amazing.ReplyDelete
What gorgeous pics. I especially love the road runner and those beautiful poppies! Amazing how the lizard almost completely blends into his surroundings.ReplyDelete
Just finished reading through your A-Z posts from the beginning and I must say, that it's been a delight, especially with the pictures that accompany your words.ReplyDelete
Also thank you very much for dropping by and comment on my post. :)
From Sweden, through NYC, across the country to the Mojave Desert--wow. What a journy!ReplyDelete
Love the flowers where you live!!!?..:)JPReplyDelete
Hi, this is Julia from sweetbeariesart.com, and I found your blog post via the A to Z Challenge. I have been up to Lancaster, and it looks very similar to the high desert areas of Hesperia and Joshua tree, which is near where I grew up in the San Bernardino Mountains. We are very lucky with the wild flowers to be found in spring, and everyone thinks the desert is barren. Not the case.ReplyDelete
Thanks for finding my blog through A-Z. I've never been to southern California, but I've seen similar sights in the New Mexico desert.ReplyDelete
Loved the roadrunner! We have a family of them living in our neighborhood in San Antonio.
Your lizard looks a lot like my many lizards, moving smoothly and quickly across the deck and sometimes sneaking into the house. The dogs don't bother to try to catch them anymore.ReplyDelete
Intressant, ja öken är ju inget vi har här :-)ReplyDelete
Wow! That airplane bone yard is wicked. And Poor casino!ReplyDelete
I love the poppies, such contrast from the desert. Seems to be an interesting place, so different from our part of the World. Enjoy your weekendReplyDelete
I can see why people go west. A little dry but gorgeous. Did that road runner have a snake in his mouth? That would scare me. Love the poppies. SandieReplyDelete
The poppies were gorgeous!!ReplyDelete
I am liking this 'adventure' you are taking us all on Inger!ReplyDelete
I love California Poppies!! And can't imagine what a field of them look like. We get excited about the tiny few we get here in the garden every year!! lol
I would love to experience the desert and I know what you mean about the humid and wet east coast. Thanks for this Inger good job.
This is the first time I heard of Orange coloured Poppies. They are very pretty. The Desert itself has its own beauty. Thanks for sharing such good pictures.ReplyDelete
Visiting from the A to Z Challenge. Very interesting so far! What a life you've had!ReplyDelete
In 1973, David and I started our life together by driving from Maryland to Texas in his VW bug.ReplyDelete
Love the truck.
looks dry and dead, but so many interesting creatures live there on that desert! awesome!ReplyDelete
thanks for visiting my a-z post :)
That view of the US after the beauties of Sweden and then the Eastern US had to have been a culture shock. We do have some bare bones country but you managed to find the pretty as well as the humorous. Well done.ReplyDelete
All your photos are so vivid. I especially love the idea of an airplane graveyard. It reminds me that every thing must eventually end up unused and somewhere--even all our amazing machines.ReplyDelete
I certainly recognize these photo spots, and I love driving through the desert. I think those who haven't been in the Southern California desert can't imagine how beautiful it is in the early morning or sunset. I enjoyed your photos very much!ReplyDelete
Stopping from the A-Z challenge. Loove your photography! Thanks for sharing.ReplyDelete
Very interesting Inger.All those planes in the desert.ReplyDelete
Anne/Is Anyone There