Last night in an unexpected turn of events P. and I found ourselves hiking up the side of a mountain in the company of a 160-pound she-mastiff named Butter. It was an invitation we couldn't refuse.
We found a coulee of yellow wildflowers. We saw the Salton Sea. We came upon the only lupines I've ever seen in this part of the Mojave. And at 4,200 feet we read the inscription on a cross where a road paver lost his life: King of the Mt. Indeed.
By living Out in the Desert we sacrifice certain comforts, certain late-twenties rites that most of our friends our age are experiencing. And we miss them, those comforts and those friends. I have to admit that on occasion I miss Whole Foods. And sometimes I pine for a good movie theater, sushi and the Anthro sales rack. But man, was last night a heady reminder of how grateful I am to live here, of how the luxuries we lack are made up for tenfold by the riches of the landscape and how, quite possibly, this place transforms us into the better versions of ourselves.