Two birthday celebrations, four states and 1,400 miles later, we are here in Yuma, Arizona. We are on our way to Tucson to explore Saguaro cacti in the Sonoran Desert. I’m not quite prepared for the heat, having lived in a wet climate for the past year, but I’m eager to explore the vast desert landscape.

Before leaving California yesterday, we circled the Salton Sea, a large body of water in the California desert. The lake was created by an engineering mishap and became an oasis of sorts for the rich and famous. The Salton Sea was supposed to become the American Riviera and in the 1950s and 60s, it was a bustling beach resort. This ideal state didn’t last long as the area became a wasteland caused by a variety of environmental factors. Like many people, my knowledge of the area was limited to the Val Kilmer movie, titled with the same name. I didn’t appreciate the full history until I met my photography mentor, Keith Skelton. Keith holds annual photography workshops at the Salton Sea… calling it, Salton Sea, The Man Made Accident. His photographs of the area are beautiful and eerie.

We drove along the water and headed toward Bombay Beach, a town with just over 200 residents. It was hard to tell if some of the buildings were run down, deserted or occupied. The residents ride around in beat-up golf carts instead of cars, mainly because the nearest gas station is 40 miles away.

Seeing Bombay Beach makes me feel grateful about my life.

We don’t have a choice where we’re born into this world. However, each step of the way, we can choose to make a decision. That decision can be difficult or easy. But in the end, we always have a choice.

Empty street, Bombay Beach.

Bombay Beach

Categories: Airstream Bambi Trips

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