Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Joshua Tree National Park
Early to rise, before the sun, I had a lot of homework to do. As the sun rose, I wondered what the day would bring? Would I be staying or going home? Soon other arose, my alone time was over. Breakfast pizza was on the menu, but it took forever to cook. While we waited we did Leave No Trace lessons. Courtney was a trickster, scrambling her words, and Ooter did a skit. DeBoer’s lesson I missed, I am going home on the 15. Jeff and I talked about the logistics as my heart was breaking. I am going home. After laundry and grocery shopping, we made a stop at the library. Rose helped me buy my first plane ticket, and DeBoer got his permit for his deer cam. Back at camp, we had taco salad for lunch. Steve told us to be ready to hike, and we left for Rattlesnake Canyon. I couldn’t believe my eyes. I scurried up the granite rocks, leaping and bounding up to the top. I felt as if I was in the backcountry again; my mood soared. DeBoer gave his lesson on setting up deer cams. I am pretty sure we caught two ugly cavemen. The sun was setting; it was time to leave. The best part of the day was on its way. Halfway back to camp, Jeff showed us a detour. We hiked in the dark with the stars as our guide for just a few minutes before coming to a pile of rocks. Jeff said caving; our faces lit up. We worked together to scurry and squeeze through all the cracks and holes. Derek found a Tarantula and wanted to pick it up; he settled for petting it instead. Ooter, Courtney, DeBoer and I all swallowed some air and touched its furry, fuzzy, legs. Never before have I had such an experience. I felt full of wonder as I explored the cave climbing and crawling not knowing where I would end up. DeBoer found a big room, and soon discovered he was really outside. I climbed out of the cave into the night air, the stars all twinkling and moon lighting the sky. We all sat and waited for the others. When Steve and Jeff popped out, we left for camp to eat supper. Supper was awesome, even if it was called Manly Orzo. We debriefed, then briefed about our little hike tomorrow. It was clean up then bedtime. As I slipped in my bag for the night, I smiled at the moon and stars, goodnight.
Oh and before I forget… HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROSE!!