The desert has always had a special pull for me. It is probably because it is such an unusual landscape – living the majority of my life in the Northeast. The idea of few trees and mostly small ones at that, rugged geography of sand or hard-packed red earth and little visible life seems so foreign to me that it is intriguing! The seeming solitude of this place misrepresents itself – as easily as we do. It can appear bleak and desolate – with little good going on – but below the surface lies an abundance of treasure if only we know how to look it!
I was amazed by how many minerals and gems were discovered in them thar hills! Below the stark and lonely desert, where it seems nothing of use or value can be found, some of the greatest strikes in mining history were made! In fact, the southwest cut its teeth on gold mines, copper mines, gem strikes and silver. Who thought, “Hey. Let’s start digging here in the middle of the desert!”?
Another gold mine is spring in the desert. We visited the Desert Museum in Tuscon and were greeted with a beautiful display of cactus blooms and desert flowers. April is a fabulous time to see the desert come to life – and there was so much of it!
Life finds a way where it persists; where it finds ways to adapt and embrace its environment. We would do well to learn from the desert!