Last weekend, the brother and I went on a little road trip from Los Angeles to Palm Springs and Joshua Tree. I had been dreaming of revisiting the deserts of California ever since my solo excursion to the Salton Sea, Salvation Mountain and Joshua Tree about a year ago. I've lived in urban cities most of my life, but there's a need to fulfill my earthy side as well. The deserts of the Old West are one of my favorite landscapes, and I find myself at complete peace out there. If I settle in Los Angeles in the future, I would love to own a vacation home in the desert.
We first stopped to see the Cabazon dinosaurs, which might look familiar from Pee Wee's Big Adventure. The roadside attraction features the "world's largest" Tyrannosaurus Rex and Brontosaurus statues, and you can also visit the robotic dinosaurs and creationist museum for a $7.50 fee. We continued Eastward towards Palm Springs, where we saw the Forever Marilyn Monroe Statue (we were lucky to see this as we found out later it was moved that day to New Jersey!) and had a delicious brunch of Stumptown coffee, pulled pork sandwich and butterscotch pie at the Ace Hotel.
We then drove north for an hour to Landers, where we sound bathed in the Integratron Dome. It's a purported "acoustically perfect" rejuvenation, anti-gravity and time travel machine designed by George Van Tassel. He claimed extraterrestrials from Venus directed him to build it and believed the structure would help prevent the extinction of human life. We laid down for a meditative sound session which involved a man playing tones from quartz bowls. I drifted off into a new level of consciousness until unexpectedly awoken by the individual next to me, but the brother said he felt nothing from the experience.
We spent the last half of the day jumping from rock to rock at Joshua Tree National Park and then visiting the old sets of Western films at Pioneertown. We ended our desert trip with beer and a BBQ dinner at Pappy and Harriet's, and then enjoyed live performances by the Wild Reeds from Los Angeles and Snow Apple from Amsterdam.