Friday, January 30, 2009

Into the Desert...

Last night, when we rolled across the vast flatlands of Texas and New Mexico, it was already dark. My eyes were trained on the carpet of stars above and not much on the landscape draped in darkness and shadowy silhouettes hard to make out.

We got back on the road again fairly early. I took a couple of shots of the view from our hotel room of Albuquerque and pieced them together to give a feel of a panoramic. The city seemed fairly new around where we were staying and it was hard to imagine that this is where I was born. (I called my mom and she was delighted at me being where we once lived.)

Upon leaving the city, I saw some hot air balloons off in the distance. Ever since I was a kid, I remembered looking at postcards of the city of my birth and saw hot air balloons. I always wondered if there were actually hot air balloons or if it was just a once in awhile thing. Upon leaving, I saw a couple out over near the horizon, lifting off into the big sky.

Above is a picture of the mountains around Flagstaff taken about 30 miles back. It was strange to see the snow there. It seemed like a cold reminder of where we had just come from, a wintry land bearded with icicles and frost.

As we wove our way through the mountains around Flagstaff, the landscape started drying out and warming up. My face was pressed against the window, my skin trying to drink up the rays of light. It surprised me that it could be so bright and so warm. I made mental notes of the shifts in trees and birds. Each area seemed to have it's particular vibe, from snow-laden evergreens with giant fat ravens perched in the branches to tall cacti with dusty brown birds darting around the spines.
After a stop in Phoenix to visit briefly with a friend, we continued on our way to Tucson, moving further out into the desert country. Just around sunset, we saw the familiar mountain ranges that fringe Tucson. They seemed like a ragged smile of an old friend. I clicked my hellos with my camera, snapping blurry images of the desert at dusk, bathed in a lavender light and cool shadows.


jeweledrabbit said...

That last photo is absolutely stunning.

Cynthia of Cynful Creations said...

Love your pics, Andrew. FYI, there is an annual balloon festival held in October in Albuquerque every year.