At last I’m in a real desert area. However, the juxtaposition of the sand (reminding me of a beach town) and desert shrubbery with the beautifully landscaped and affluent homes and communities is rattling. Many celebrities have or have had homes here including Bill Gates, Gerald Ford, Bob Hope, Elvis Presley, Oscar de la Hoya, and many others. Palm Desert is a relatively new community, beginning as date plantations, but it’s short history is an interesting one. The area actually was once known as the Old MacDonald Ranch. I intend to study the Native American tribes, whose presence is now felt through the Casinos. The only desert I’d seen before was that of the West Texas Badlands, where the water tasted and smelled of sour sulfur and everything either bit or stabbed you. I went to the Living Desert here and learned so much about the deserts of the world. In the words of its website, the place is part “zoo and endangered species conservation center – botanical gardens – natural history museum – wilderness park – nature preserve – [and] education center. Go here to learn more of this place.
Today, I’ll have my signing at the Barnes & Noble here. Already busy with much to do. Sunday through Tuesday, I intend to spend writing. I’m sure I’ll return to my Southern home with many ideas and hopefully completed projects and new contacts.