Palm Springs was never on my list of places to visit. Yet not only am I here, I love its beauty and diversity!
Weaving between the palm trees and noisy birds are religious Hasidic Jews, wealthy retired socialites, homeless people with who freely express themselves, and more street cleaners, groundskeepers, and security guards than I’ve seen in any other American city.
It’s easy to drive in Palm Springs; the streets are wide, clean and flat. Free parking everywhere—even downtown in the posh shopping and gourmet food district—with spaces big enough for school buses.
I spent most of the day in a gorgeous new library, editing my latest video (Will Your Relationship Succeed? 7 Reasons for Marriage Failure) and watching the koi swim in a pond.
Rubber Tramps on the Road
This weekend I’m volunteering in Quartzsite, Arizona at a rendezvous called Rubber Tramps on the Road. It’s organized by the Home on Wheels Alliance.
When I signed up to volunteer, I thought Rubber Tramps was for people like me, self-employed camper van owners who can choose where and when to travel.
However, having already spent a night in Quartzsite, I realized the people served by the Home on Wheels Alliance have no choice but to live in their vehicles. The rendezvous will cover things like Chronic Illness Tips for Nomads, Interior Decorating for Homes on Wheels, Pets on the Road, and Basic Vehicle Maintenance. There’s even a Q & A With the actors in the Nomadland movie!
Quartzsite—a rough, no frills mining town—is only two hours from Palm Springs, but it might as well be on a different planet.
Loving the Randomness of What Is
The thing I love most about being on the road is ending up in places I never imagined. Palm Springs, Quartzsite, Walmart parking lots, the Grand Canyon, Sedona, and driving a million miles an hour in the wrong direction on a ten-lane freeway with no idea how to get off.
Hard stuff happens, too. Loneliness, financial worries, yearning for a partner or even a friend on the road, upcoming doctor’s appointments, and physical pain (which I shared in last week in A Lump in the Road.
I love what is—all of it! Because it’s life. And, as Agatha Christie said, just to be alive is a grand thing.
P.S. I’m writing this in Ruby; nearby a groundskeeper is using an electric leaf blower to clear off the sidewalk. Not only is the sound hard to love, so is the debris I can hear blowing up against my camper van. It’s much easier (but not impossible) to love what is when it’s far away and doesn’t affect me. 🙂
P.P.S. I found an abandoned puppy in a dark rainy parking lot in Sedona. His name is Bob; his picture is at the top of this email. I never dreamed I’d be the type of person who puts a stuffy in the window of her camper van, but that’s what is. And I love it.
Just like Oystein before me, I also feel I must let you know how important what you write and say is to me in all life trials,and how much love and care I feel flowing straight intro my soul when I hear you,and how supported by you feel when I’malone. You’re in my thoughts and prayers. You’re precious to me. Love from Poland
So much love – thank you, Małgorzata! I’m humbled and honoured to hear from you. I’ve never been to Poland, but Warsaw has always been high on my list of places to visit. My great-grandma came to Canada from the Ukraine; for some reason she was very very fond of Poland. I remember her stories – and her sauerkraut pedaheh 🙂
With hugs and prayers from Vancouver,
Just a quick word from the other side of the world, in Norway. Just wanted to let you know how much you and your writing in means for me. It’s where I go when things are really difficult. And you have my friendship all right, even if we are some distance from each other! Envious of where you are, the desert is just so beautiful. You are in my prayers, Laurie. Thank you for everything.
Thank you so much, Øystein! I’ve never been to Norway; the closed I’ve ever been is Belgium, which I loved. I did have a Norwegian landlady when I lived in Vancouver. She was awesome 🙂