Funny story about this shoot… We were on our way to Palm Springs when we finally arrived to a stretch in the road where the famous white windmills rolled along the hills. Keep in mind I have been sick for nearly two weeks at this point and Jose’s work load had been off the charts. We were kind of deliriously rallying to make the trip.
With me drugged up on dayquil and Jose determined to de-stress over the weekend- we decide to pull the car off the road onto a dirt path. The desert is stretched out for miles in the eery silence of monumental sized wind machines grazing the setting sun. We argue on which path to take after seeing some no trespassing signs (which I of course suggested we simply climb over) before settling on a less beaten path (and less illegal) next to a patch of Palm Springs Suburbia. We drive on. Until, oh wait. That’s right- until we literally can drive no more.
Our tires begin to peel in the soft earth Californian’s call sand. (What is this magical dust?)We spin out and watch dust rise and settle over all the windows before finally climbing out of the car to inspect the damage. Our front tire is literally swimming/sunk in sand, the wheel no longer visible.
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Not one to be beaten so quickly, I immediately climb out and get on my knees to dig out some sand. Jose shooed me away to place some wooden planks behind the tires and we giggled as we bumped elbows. What a crazy, surreal moment.
Sand in our hair and splinters in our hands, with a rental car sunk into the hot desert sand. Rattle snake holes dotted the dry spots of earth where we searched for wood and the sun was setting quickly, yet, we found ourselves suddenly quiet liberated- laughing and taking a moment to breathe it all in. Forget the stress of work and feeling sick for weeks… Luckily we had water too, because no joke it was 110 degrees out.
Once we decided that our limited city skills would not suffice to rescue the car, we called Mike from Mike’s Towing. Mike is a true gem of a human being who surprisingly spoke with me HIMSELF on the phone before arriving within 15 minutes lickety-split. He arrived to a gig that in theory should have taken 20 minutes, but due our pure ignorance of all things desert, turned into a nearly 2-hour adventure.
We watched Mike (and offered to assist him) as he creatively dug out, pulled, pushed and drove our car through a mean sand pit all of 20 feet. By the time we could actually pull the car to the side of the road we all felt like fast friends. I snap-chatted the whole thing much to Mike’s amusement and he blushed when I asked for a selfie. “Well I didn’t know I’d be a rockstar today” he said bashfully.
After paying a ridiculously affordable fee to Mike, we happily drove off into the sunset. Upon arriving at the celebratory dinner, a good friend of ours heard our story and reminded us how we could avoid that extra slice of adventure next time around…
“Well here’s what I did. I took the 105 to 91 and then the 111. I don’t remember and sand.” Thank you Kevin. Well said.
Photos by the talented Jose Behar