But that is not what this post is about. I want to explain the photo of me at rest in a bed provided by Planet Earth. I want to capture a little of the joy of a life outdoors, about the animal side of that pleasure. My friend Kemp Anderson and I hiked up Palm Canyon, the big one west of Borrego Springs, a town in the middle of Anza-Borrego State Park. It was winter and the sky decided to rain on us for a fair bit of the first day’s hike. I had decided, perhaps foolishly, not to bring a 4-pound nylon tent with me.
On the first night, with rain pelting us and dark impending, I found instead a 40-ton tent, a giant boulder in the bottom of the wash with a dry patch just my size. The rain never threatened to fill the wash and I passed a comfortable night sheltered beneath a granite rain fly.
The next day we took a big old hike up that wash. The rain had ceased but solid overcast shielded our eyes and kept us wearing layers. A rock-strewn mile upstream, past a couple of big palm oases, we happened upon the scene you see. I don’t know how long that boulder bounded basin had been collecting those sycamore leaves but the bed was delightfully deep — a dry, crunchy mattress close to 2’ thick. I waded into this pool of defunct vegetative solar panels and lowered myself onto its surface, buoyed and padded by deciduous cellulose. Ahhh…
These are the moments that never make it onto a spreadsheet, that can pass unnoticed, but that make life on this spinning sphere so magical. These are the moments that keep me going as I tackle the bigger challenges of life. I hope to have many more before I shed this garment of a body and am rendered a dried fragment of my former glory. I wish the same for you.