States visited: 49!

visited 49 states (98%)
Create your own visited map of The United States
Miles driven so far -
LOOP 1 (Aug 2009 - Aug 2010): 29,000
LOOP 2 (May - August 2012): 10,800

Highest altitude with camper: 11,158ft (I-70, CO)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Dave’s 40! Tuesday, March 23rd

We’re not quite sure how we’re getting this old – we don’t feel that we should be at this point just yet; oh well, it’s as old as we feel, we’ll continue to ignore the number. As Dave informed one of the ladies serving breakfast on Saturday, “I’m going to be 21 again!” She sweetly responded to me, “Well, if he’s only 21, you must be barely 18!” What a sweetie, loved her immediately!

The kids were a tad put out that Daddy didn’t ‘get the day off’ on his birthday (and thereby ‘getting them the day off’ too!). Thankfully, as he’s working east coast hours, he was finished early by PDT standards, so we were able to go out and do a few things.

We went to the town of Twentynine Palms, a few miles along the road, to take a tour of the murals. Since 1994, more than 20 historical morals have been painted on the city’s business walls, portraying its cultural heritage and Mojave Desert flora and fauna and inspiring an arts renaissance in the town. They were amazing, each one has a story behind it and interesting history. We saw the majority of them, the kids’ favorite was a trompe l’oeil about an unfinished mural, by an artist who fell asleep, depicting a a bull named Valentine! It was incredible, it really looked as through the scaffolding and bull were standing in front of the wall – the kids jumped out to go and touch it – until they got up really close, they didn’t believe us that it was only a painting!

One of my favorites was ‘The Sun Rises Mural’: a stunning desert landscape, featuring a colorfully illuminated pre-dawn sky, is a glorious scene depicting a panorama of three stages of sunrise at three historical Easter sunrise services from 1930 to present in Twentynine Palms. The 14-foot by 140-foot mural was painted by Los Angeles artist Richard Wyatt.

There is obviously a huge military presence in the town, thanks to the base which spans the whole valley. For this reason, there were an unusually large number of barber shops – ‘we specialize in military haircuts’, tattoo parlors – at least 5 on one street, and tailors - 'military sewing a specialty'!

On our way back to Yucca Valley, we stopped at Joshua Tree National Park’s Rattlesnake Canyon. We saw a couple of roadrunners and lizards, climbed on some of the rocks and checked out a few of the climbers, this area is a mecca for climbers. The campground (no hook-ups) was packed; we realized we’d hit Spring Break again – lots of kids around.

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