Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The Roads Travelled

Day 21:  Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The green fields of the central valley
This morning we are hunkered down in the Mojave again, that majestic desert that always takes my breath away each time I see it.  Yesterday morning we left Monterey and traveled south down the central coast, passing by huge fields of produce, from broccoli, lettuce, strawberries and a host of others.  Then the fields turned into giant grape vineyards stretching as far as the eye could see.  Turning eastward, we passed the orchards of oranges, pistachios and almonds. Then we drove up and over the Tehachapi Mountains and entered the high desert, staying overnight at Edwards Air Force Base family campground.

Hunkered down in the desert.
Do you think I should up-size?
The Carl A. Milhoan Path
My uncle Carl was stationed at Edwards AFB and died in an aircraft test flight which crashed on Shadow Mountain near here in 1952.  Several streets on the base are named after crew members of that fatal accident, but not one for my uncle.  Several years ago, after researching and writing down his story, I named a pathway (I wish I could have erected a sign) here at the campground the “Carl A. Milhoan Path.”  No one is aware of this memorial path but me.  Each time I come, I walk the path and think of this uncle I never met—who, along with so many others, gave his life in the service of his beloved country.

I wish you could have shared the beautiful sunset here in the desert with me last night.  I remember my father saying at 80 years of age that he wanted to make one more trip to Arizona “just to see the sunset.”  I hope to make another trip back to the Mojave too—just to see the sunset!

Today?  Where will we go?  I have Las Vegas as our destination for this evening, but I sure would like to visit Death Valley again—so who knows!  It is so good to be on the road again.

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