Well, it's February and here I go again, longing for the desert. As the snow gets deeper, so do my thoughts on warmer, dryer places. In winter, I think about summer. On nights when the temperature is in the single digits, I like nothing better than to sit in front of the fire and plan a trip to Arizona or New Mexico. Every winter I check out travel books to the Caribbean, Belize, New Zealand or Bali. It all sounds so exciting, the aqua waters, steel drum bands, colorful sarongs, bare feet and MaiTai's. But, it's the cactus and succulents with fushia flowers, the sharp spines on the mighty saguaros, the prickly pear and jumping cholla in the vast Sonoran desert that stirs my wanderlust. Thoughts of this scene are what really thrill me!
Like right now, I'm picturing myself staying at a birding cottage, an adobe, in the Chiricahua mountains. I see a Roadrunner, zipping past a mama Gambel's Quail and her six young 'uns, and a coyote in the distance. Above me in the Chiracahua pine and sycamore trees are flycatchers, flickers, swallows and wrens. Mockingbirds and thrashers, warblers, sparrows and hummers. All singing different songs, at the same time. Oh! There's a Gila monster! And a desert tortoise too. And over there, a white-tailed deer is kissing an ocelot. (Like I said, this is my image).
I feel warmer in winter just thinking about these places in the desert southwest. The jewels in my world. Lands I will never get tired of reading about. Places I'll forever go to. Every year, for as long as I live.
But, for now, I will book mark this page, the one with the blooming Ocotillo, so vibrant orange red. It's time to wax my skis. There's a mountain here that's calling my name.
Are you day dreaming of places far and wide?