When we travel, I'm usually the one who finds the interesting places to check out and the one who creates the itinerary for our time away. I enjoy doing the research and getting the satisfaction of knowing we got the most out of our time in a new place. Todd and I work well together in this way. He's pretty easy going and trusts me to find things to do that we'll all enjoy. Even if it's something that he isn't really into himself, he is a great sport about it. But every so often he steps in to organize something that no one else would have though of doing. I love that kind of adventure! This was the case when we drove a couple hours off route from Yosemite to LA, into the Mojave Desert, seeking "The Bride's" church.
Rolling hills of drought parched grass gave way to dust and tumble weeds. Windfarms flanked the highway until there was nothing more than an endless plain of dry earth and the eerie shapes of the Joshua Trees. The blue of the sky and that unfettered sun were blindingly bright. A stop in Bakersfield gave us a shock as we opened the doors to our air conditioned haven. I've never felt hot wind. It was as though someone was pointing a blow dryer directly at my face on the highest setting! Even in the tropics, the winds off the ocean are cool enough to give you reprieve from the sweltering heat. Not so here, in that Subway parking lot. I felt as though I would dry up and blow away. What a place!
The Sanctuary Adventist Church (located in what seems like the middle of nowhere, Death Valley) is an old, adobe style, Spanish chapel which was used as a filming location in Kill Bill. If you've seen the movie, you'll know exactly what pivotal scene I'm talking about. The chapel is available for rent to use for filming and photography sessions, and is still in use for it's original purpose. You aren't able to enter the church unless you've made arrangements before hand, and the windows are curtained so we didn't get any looks at the interior. It didn't really dampen the moment though. There was a guard dog on a neighbouring property snarling and barking, barbed wire fencing, scorching sun, hot dry wind, and the ever present threat of snakes and scorpions. It was totally perfect!