Tuesday, May 02, 2006


Stampy’s Big Adventure – Part I/Day 2

After a late start (Gram’s ghost not only turned off our alarm clock, but must have drank some of the wine because no way did we go through 3 bottles) with brunch at Crossroads, we hiked out to Lost Horse Mine.

We saw these Mojave Yuccas on the way out…

They look like they’re crowned with cauliflower when they bloom…

I almost face planted in this Mojave Mound Cactus getting this shot…

The mine and shafts are fenced off to prevent to the inquisitive moron from falling in…

On our way back, we decided to check out Cap Rock. Not only is this a popular climbing spot, but, according to a Rolling Stone article in the Gram scrapbook, is where Gram and Keith Richards used to scramble up and look for flying saucers. Also, Gram Parson’s body was stolen by his road manager and another guy and burned at the base of Cap Rock. Cool stuff, huh?

Then, to finish off the nature portion of our day, we went to the spot where the Mojave and Colorado deserts meet. It’s called the Ocotillo Cactus Garden, but it is actually full of Cholla cacti.

I had to take a picture of the creosote bush just because every time we came upon one I’d say, “One more wafer thin mint, Monsieur Creosote Bush?” and giggle.

After a quick change of clothing (the temp changes quickly in the high desert this time of year), we headed off to Pioneertown and Pappy and Harriet's Bar. During the day, this is one of my favorite places to hang out. The outdoor bar sees people hiking up or pulling up on horses, atv’s , and Harley’s.

Inside, the Thrift Store All-stars were playing. They were awesome. If you are ever in the area, check them out.

Finally, we ended up at the 29 Palms Inn for dinner. They have a very good restaurant near the pool. There was a trio playing there. Both Pappy and Harriet’s and 29 Palms Inn highlight what I love so much about the desert. One minute you’re driving down a dirt road, the next minute your listening to awesome live music and drinking bloody mary’s with tattooed bikers and hippies dancing like they’re at a Dead show. Love it!

In case you were wondering about the Tanya Tucker dream, we had watched Tuckerville on cable the night before. In it, Tanya bought her cleaning lady tickets to a Tim McGraw show for her birthday and took her backstage to meet Tim. While we were hiking out to the mine, I was thinking about what would happen if I ever met Keanu Reeves and we hit it off. Then I imagined us going to an opening or a premier. The press would be wondering, “Who is this plain Jane?” I would meet towering model-actresses who would look down at me imperiously. Then I thought, wait. Tanya Tucker has put on some weight and some years, and yet she still commands attention. Why? Her cleaning lady was just as cute. So maybe it’s all about attitude and confidence. Then, reality hit. I’m hiking through the desert thinking about Keanu and Tanya. So I shared this with Matilda who simply chuckled. Now that’s a good friend.

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