Monday, March 30, 2020

Godwin Fellowship Meets in Parking Lot.

We are delighted to inform you that Godwin Christian Fellowship will
conduct all services in a DRIVE-IN format for the foreseeable future!
Everyone will be safely served while in the comfort of their own vehicles! 
Come enjoy spirited singing and wholesome 
fellowship on our beautiful parking lot! 

Every Sunday at 10:30 AM. 
There is always hope in GOD! Please join us!!
Pastor Max Rossi
Godwin Christian Fellowship
6389 Godwin Road
Wonder Valley/29 Palms, CA 92277

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Wonder Valley Sand Paper online.

The Wonder Valley Sand Paper, published now and then by Ken and Teresa Sitz, will be online for the foreseeable future. The WVSP began as a hard copy only publication designed to get people OUT of their cabins once a week. It was distributed at The Palms Restaurant and Bar and at the Wonder Valley Community Center. Now that both of those venues are closed, the WVSP will be available online, so STAY IN your cabins and read the WVSP online.

For the March 29, 2020 issue, go to:

And remember,
"The WVSP is published by Ken and Teresa Sitz as the spirit moves. If you want something more regular, publish your own paper. If you don’t read the WVSP you’ll be uninformed. If you do read it, you’ll be misinformed. The editors are not responsible. For more information, please re-read."

Local business closed by Sheriff's Department.

After gunshots heard at a home, multiple arrests made

from The Desert Independent

Tuesday, March 24, 2020


I would like to personally thank all the VOLUNTEERS who participated in todays USDA Food distribution.  If it were not for all of the volunteers who gave it their all there would not have been a distribution.  Remember, these folks truly love living in the desert and doing all they can for the community.

Big thanks to Ken and Teresa who we all know organized the event!

Steve Reyes

Monday, March 23, 2020

Vacation rentals must shut down by order of the County.

"County officials say these short-term rentals must cease operations immediately; bookings for the foreseeable future must be canceled; no new arrivals may be processed; no reservations should be accepted until the state and county’s orders are rescinded; and any guests currently in rentals must be told to return home. Violation of state and county health orders are crimes punishable by fines, imprisonment, or both."

San Bernardino County Department of Public Health
Please use this form to notify the county of any facilities not following the Health Officer Order.

San Bernardino County Land Use Services Online Complaint Form

Sunday, March 22, 2020

USDA Food Distribution -- April 21.

The USDA Food Distribution will begin at 10:00 a.m. on TUESDAY, April 21, at the Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526-½ Amboy Road, Wonder Valley CA 92277. The Community Center is next to the Fire Station. The event continues until noon, or until the food runs out, which has been happening lately, about 11:00 a.m.

This food distribution is for Wonder Valley residents only.

We will be taking PRECAUTIONS to protect YOUR and OUR health. 
Please enter the access road at the WVCC sign and continue driving around the building until you stop behind the car in front of you. Stay to the inside of the curve (left) in case someone has to leave. Do NOT get out of your car. We will come around, take your name, give you a ticket(s), and then bring your box(es) to your car. Please be patient and follow all instructions from the volunteers. This is to insure your safety and the safety of our volunteers and staff. Thank you.

The WVCC is CLOSED. If you need to use a bathroom you may use the porta potty in the park. 

Low income Wonder Valley residents self-certify on site. No ID or other documentation is required. You may pick up ONE (1) box for a neighbor, or they may pick up ONE (1) box for you, IF a signed pick up form is presented. One pick up per person. Pick up forms are available online at They are also available at the WVCC on Mondays, Wednesdays, or Saturdays from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., and at the kiosk outside the WVCC the week before the event.

For more information, call Teresa Sitz at (760) 367-9880.

The text below is required.

Nondiscrimination Statement
In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at:, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

(1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;

(2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or

(3) email:

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

SBC Updates.

For the latest updates for San Bernardino County regarding closings, please go to:

Joe Barrett Photography.

Joe Barrett shared his photograph of a struggling acacia greggii (Catsclaw, Tear Blanket, Wait a Minute) bush besieged by orange mistletoe, on the border of Twentynine Palms. 

This is the time of year when the catsclaw greens up, in vivid obsene chartreuse -- if it's healthy. Later it is laden with heavy racemes of cream-colored flowers.

Now that everyone has a phone, everyone is a photographer. This photo is an example of what sets the artist apart from those who take snapshots, though, in all fairness, many snapshots are also quite good.

In this photograph the expert composition is evident, the shadows on the ground of sand; the lower white dead branches - which protect the lower parts of the tree from predation; the orange layer of parasitic growth; and the triumphant, though struggling, leafing of the upper branches; all supporting a diverse biological community. What a metaphor of desert life! I'm also impressed by the color composition: the white, black, and orange against a muted steel bue sky and the muted color of the sand below.

All in all a very complex and layered composition that points to the genius of the artist.


Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Desert Trail Column - March 18, 2020

Don’t forget to stop by Del Taco tonight, March 18, between 4 and 8, and use one of the coupons being handed out in the parking lot. This will authorize Del Taco to donate 20% of your order total to Wonder Valley Community Church for the building’s “facelift,” and there will be no increase in the cost of your food. A painless way to give a charitable contribution!

Mark your calendars for the Salvation Army Food Distribution on Wednesday, March 25 from 11 a.m. to when the food is gone. Trader Joe’s provides the food which usually includes meat and fresh fruits and veggies.

Most events at our community center are sponsored by our non-profit organization Friends of Wonder Valley. For additional information on any local event, contact WVCC Coordinator Teresa Sitz at or 760-367-9880.

 We send out Rainbows-of-Aquamarines-and-Jonquils to Donna Parsons and Tyler Holsclaw (23) who celebrate their special days this week. Happy birthday, Tyler and Donna!

 Karen’s Commentary:  Thanks to Bob, Mary Quamme and son Joe for lots and lots of coupons, and for all the stamps and goodies sent by Jan Peek from Arizona!

 If you find a sick, injured or orphaned wild bird, you may reach wild bird rehabilitator Susan Doggett at 714-637-8355 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week. If you would like to help Susan continue to save wild birds, please consider any of the following:  1. Hosting an art or crafts class for adults or an “Arty Party” for your children’s special events; 2. Adopting a non-protected bird (parakeet, small parrot, domestic duck, pigeon, etc.); 3. Enrolling in a three-hour wildlife rehabilitation class so that you can volunteer to help at Susan’s local licensed wildlife care facility. You can also help protect wild birds by keeping cats safely indoors and by restricting tree trimming to fall and winter months.

 Handy Hint:  Sign up for Informed Delivery at the U.S. Postal Service at Each delivery day the USPS will send an email to you containing digital scans of the letter-size mail that will soon arrive at your box or door. The email also has details about packages scheduled to arrive soon.

 Today’s Thought:  In the year 1959, Alaska and Hawaii became states, little girls clamored for the new Barbi dolls, Lee Petty won the first Daytona 500 in a photo finish, the Explorer 6 satellite was launched from Cape Canaveral and transmitted the first picture of Earth from space, The Twilight Zone debuted, the top song was “The Battle of New Orleans” by Johnny Horton, Karen turned 17 and Darlene turned 7!


Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

USDA Food Distribution CANCELLED!

The COUNTY has just shut down our USDA Food Distribution -- don't come in.

The Salvation Army Food Distribution is also cancelled, and the WVCC is closed until further notice.

So sorry, everyone.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Artist Spotlight - Eric Hisaw

I met Eric Hisaw when I lived in Austin Texas. Austin is chock full of great musicians and Eric is one of them. His music for me brings feelings of warm summer nights on a dusty porch drinking burbon with a big dog sitting beside you. Since that's a picture of my current life it comes as no surprise Eric's music is on constant rotation here at Cosmic Ranch. I was in touch with Eric last week and we decided to do a little catch up and interview.

Ronnie: Hey buddy! Good to talk to ya, you probably know my unhealthy obsession with the film Almost Famous, with that in mind, Eric.. what do you love about music?

Eric:   Good question, because when you do it for so long it kind of just becomes like breathing and it's easy to lose sight of what got you in to it to begin with. The first music that really hooked me was early rock'n'roll like Elvis, Buddy Holly and Eddie Cochran and also some hillbilly stuff like Johnny Horton and Hank Williams. I think I was drawn to how music could take you on a journey. It is like literature but using more of your senses to get the message across. A way of telling stories that is both intellectual and physical. That is what grabbed me as a listener. As a player, I really enjoy having a discipline, something to strive for everyday. I also like the outsider, rebellious, revolutionary aspect of living immersed in the arts.

Ronnie: We met in Austin, how did you end up there and how has it played a part in your music?

Eric:   I had done a bit of traveling around before I came to Austin, living in Louisiana and Tennessee. I was very much romanced by the Woody Guthrie/Jack Kerouac mentality, wanting to see and do everything possible. Austin became an easy choice to look in to as I was a big fan of some music coming from there, in particular Joe Ely, The LeRoi Brothers, the True Believers and a record Ely had produced for Will Sexton which really succeeded in getting the dirty Stones rock'n'roll meets country vibe that I was going for. Austin has influenced my music by being home to so many great guitar stylists, Johnny X Reed, Denny Freeman, the late Jesse Taylor, the late Eddy Shaver, the late Joe Eddy Hines. There is kind of a seamless melding of country and blues that happens with players here that doesn't happen anywhere else. Texas is obviously home to tons of great songwriters though I believe I'm more influenced by Californians than Texans in the lyric department (Los Lobos, Dave Alvin, John Doe, Merle Haggard etc.)

Ronnie:  I'm a big fan of your music and latest record.  Tell me a bit about how it came together and your writing process:

Eric:  I spent a few years working much more as a sideman and got to do a lot of really cool and interesting gigs and go lots of places. When the gig I had came to an end I got re-motivated to start my own band. It took a couple of years to get it together. I met a great bass player and harmony singer named Neal Walker at a Doug Sahm tribute show in San Antonio. We started playing together regularly and through Neal's longtime association, Shawn Sahm offered to record us. Most of the songs I'd had kicking around for awhile, they were the staples of our live set, though the first two tracks "Hurry it Up" and "Streetlamp" were brand new. The songs all touch on the same themes that have been running through my writing all along, family dynamics, romantic situations, class struggle, addiction.... I did set out to do it with a more economical approach to the lyrics and really focus on the rhythms. We cut the record in Shawn's studio almost like we were playing a gig, then I'd overdub a second guitar for texture, Shawn would put on a keyboard part and then on two tracks the great accordionist Josh Baca of Los Texmaniacs added a part.

Ronnie:  If someone hasn't heard your music how would you describe it?  I always hear something new ever time I listen.

Eric:  I think as a rule we are the worst at describing our own music. I told a radio dj one time in a long roundabout way that I was trying to create songs that had the imagery and detail Sam Shepard stories crossed with the eclectic southwestern rhythms of Doug Sahm. The DJ blurts "oh, like Joe Ely, he does that!"  I had to agree, yes he does, so much for my revolutionary idea. It seems various key words hit home in different ways for people depending on their own frame of reference. Living in Texas I feel like I have almost nothing to do with hardcore country western music, which to me is Ray Price and Johnny Bush playing shuffles and waltzes to dancers, but in New England states I have been told that my style was "honky tonk purist".  By the same token to me rock'n'roll means the Flamin' Groovies and the MC5 where to a kid in a small town it may mean Metallica and Judas Priest. That said I usually tell people we are influenced by the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan.

Ronnie:  Which guitar players are your heros?

Eric:  I have a lot of favorite guitar players who mine similar territory. I mentioned above a slew of Texas guys who I have seen live hundreds of times which impacted me quite a bit. The guys who pretty much built the foundation of what I play would have to be Keith Richards and Ron Wood, they both mix lead and rhythm guitar and use a lot of Chuck Berry licks and country bends to enhance the groove and build songs with the instrument. I've never been much for dazzling soloists. I like the tight little dynamic bits James Burton played on Rick Nelson records and with Elvis. Same with Steve Cropper at Stax. Jesse Ed Davis who played with the Taj Mahal band and did tons of sessions is a big influence. Both guitarists from Los Lobos, David Hidalgo and Cesar Rosas, are constant sources of inspiration as well.

Ronnie:  Our country is so divided, I miss protest songs a lot.  Do you feel like I do, that we need artist's voices in the battle?

Eric:  Yes, I believe it is important for artists and filmmakers and authors and poets to have a socio-political voice. It's really difficult to write good songs in that vein and it is important that the songs be of quality for anyone to hear the message or be moved by it. I've never worked in that area on a literal level, but it has always been important to me to have stories in my music that address the division of wealth and the way people are affected by politics and war. I've made it a point this year to spend time listening to every Dylan album in chronological order. His work on The Times They Are A-Changing is really incredible protest writing. There is a real flow of energy going on there. We could certainly use a new person of that depth to write about today.

Ronnie:  Austin is the live music capitol of the world ... Does that make it easier or harder for musicians living there?

Eric:  I'm not sure with how much the general demographic of Austin has changed over the last few years that it is the Live Music Capitol but a musician can play a lot of gigs here. It's a good and bad thing. I think because of the saturation of talent it is hard to get noticed and easy to get put in a box here in Austin. On the other hand a player can really develop by having the opportunity to play out more often than in other towns. I like to play a lot so it has been a good fit for me.

Ronnie: What are you currently working on, any new songs coming down the road?

Eric: I have been working with a new rhythm section and we have come up with a good chunk of new material we are planning to record this spring. A cool label that does vinyl called Flak Records is going to release the album when it is done. There are some pretty uptempo songs in there that are really fun to play live.

Ronnie: We sure would love to see you on the west coast, any plans for a trip out west?

Eric:  I would certainly like to get around a little bit more when we get a new record out. I love the west coast and have always felt like it was a great place to play my music. I will keep you posted first!

Ronnie: Eric, thanks for doing this my friend, let's show the readers where to get your music!

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Crime Stats February 2020

The Sheriff’s Department stopped providing us data on their service in October of 2016. Teresa SItz combs through the media reports each months and sifts out the crime stats for Wonder Valley. These are unofficial statistics, subject to a small margin of error.

The OHV Patrol was active in Wonder Valley on February 22 and 29. If you notice illegal OHV activity, please contact the Sheriff's Office as they received a large grant to address the problem.

Friday, March 13, 2020

USDA Food DIstribution, Tuesday, Marcy 17. 2020

Due to recommendations made by the State of California we will be doing the food distribution differently. Please read and check out the picture below.
Line up in your car on the service road behind the WVCC. Please stay to the right so that if someone has to leave they can. We will come by so that you can sign in and give you your tickets. When you get to the distribution point, please stay in your car and we will bring your box (or boxes) to you.

If you need to use the bathroom, the WVCC will be open, but otherwise, the WVCC is closed to the public during this distribution.

Thank you for your patience.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Desert Trail Column - March 11, 2020

On Saturday, March 14 there will be a Neighborhood Cleanup at our Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526 ½ Amboy Road at Blower Road, from 8 to noon, or until equipment is full. Please bring a photo ID with your address. San Bernardino County Code Enforcement and Solid Waste Management are providing bulky trash collection containers for free disposal of trash, e-waste and tires. No commercial or hazardous waste will be accepted, and tires are limited to a maximum of nine, including tires on rims. Call 909-266-3477.
A St Patrick’s Day Potluck will be held at Wonder Valley Community Church, 72575 Amboy Road at Thompson Road, following the regular Sunday service on March 15. Call 760-391-0480.
The Wonder Valley Community Center will be the location for the USDA Food Distribution on Tuesday, March 17 from 9 to noon.
If you’re hankering for some Del Taco food, be sure to go there on Wednesday, March 18 between 4 and 8 p.m. Coupons will be handed out in the parking lot/drive-thru for you to present to the cashier when paying for your order. A coupon will not give you a discount, but will allow Del Taco to donate 20% of your order total to Wonder Valley Community Church for the church building’s “facelift.” The cost of your food will not be increased. This is pain-free (and money-free) charitable giving for a very good cause.
One of our Wonder Valleyites needs a microwave oven. Does anyone out there have one they would be willing to part with? Call 760-953-5702.
Most events at our community center are sponsored by our non-profit organization Friends of Wonder Valley. For additional information on any local event, contact WVCC Coordinator Teresa Sitz at or 760-367-9880.
Karen’s Commentary: Called Frontier for phone repair and was asked if I was Darlene Parris – I said, “That’s my sister!” Was then asked if the account was under Joseph Meyers – I said, “That’s my son!” Neither are on our account. After two repair no-shows, Frontier called Ted’s cellphone to verify our address as “5025” – Dar’s address!
Darlene’s Commentary: My landline’s been dead a long time, emitting only hums, crackles and snaps. Appointments have been made with Frontier Repair – one tried, but said he’d have to get someone else out here, the rest no-shows. Perhaps I could find a high schooler who knows how to fix my phone? Anyone else having these problems??
Handy Hint: Slip a bobby pin over the loose end of duct or packing tape and never struggle to find it again.
Today’s Thought: Hairpins are thought to be one of the earliest human artifacts.
Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Desert Trail Column - March 4, 2020

The Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council meeting will take place on Monday, March 9 at the Joshua Tree Community Center, 6171 Sunburst Street, at 5:30 p.m. Our Wonder Valley representative Steve Reyes invites everyone to attend. For further information, contact Steve at
The group Coffee and Friends will meet on Tuesday, March 10 at 73883 Manana Drive in Twentynine Palms at 10 a.m. All Wonder Valley ladies are cordially invited. Contact Sharon at 760-910-9039 for further information.
Most events at our community center are sponsored by our non-profit organization Friends of Wonder Valley. For additional information on any local event, contact WVCC Coordinator Teresa Sitz at or 760-367-9880.
Since the birthstone for March is the aquamarine and the flower is the jonquil, we send out Rainbows-of-Aquamarines-and-Jonquils to Sandy Mitchell and Tonya Briggs who celebrate their special days this week. Happy birthday, Tonya and Sandy!
Karen’s Commentary: Getting a bigger TV prompted moving old TVs into different rooms, moving or repurposing old stands that now weren’t the right sizes, cleaning out cabinets and/or drawers in those old stands, rearranging furniture to accommodate new sizes of everything, and just generally purging all the stuff I found that hasn’t been used in a very long time. I’m tired!

Here are some phone numbers you might be interested in:
Glass Outhouse Art Gallery 760-367-3807, Reach Out Morongo Basin 760-361-1410, The Palms Restaurant and Bar 760-361-2810, Salvation Army office 760-228-0114, Behavioral Health Crisis Walk-in Center 760-365-6558, Suicide Hotline 800-273-8255, Veterans Crisis Hotline 800-273-8255 (Press 1), Domestic Violence Hotline 760-366-9663 (Press 1), Certified Wildlife Rehabilitator Susan Doggett 714-637-8355 and MBTA Ready Ride 760-366-2395.
Handy Hint: This clever trick was passed along to our sister Donna by an employee at DOHC Urgent Care, and Donna says it works great. For your ID, medical, credit or debit cards that you keep in those little plastic pockets in your wallet, this trick will allow you to pull them out easily and quickly. Use a small 1” piece of Scotch Tape, placing one end on the edge of your card that sticks out of the pocket, then folding it over so the other end sticks to the back side of your card, forming a small tab to use to pull the card out! The only caution is not to place the tape on the edge with a strip that you swipe through a machine or on the edge containing a chip that you insert into a machine. Thanks for that one, Donna!

Today’s Thought: A girl said she recognized me from the Vegetarians Club, but I’d swear I’ve never met herbivore.
Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Monday, March 2, 2020


The Wonder Valley Community Center is the polling location for those residing in Wonder Valley. It is next to the old fire station at 80526-½ Amboy Road, from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

If you’re a NPP (no party preference) voter, you can still vote for the Democratic candidate by requesting a Democratic ballot. This does not hold true for NPPs voting Republican.

You may register to vote at your polling location -- same day voter registration.

Wonder Valley Community Cleanup

WHEN: Saturday, March 14, 2020; 8:00 a.m. to NOON (or until equipment is full)
WHERE: Wonder Valley Community Center
80526-½ Amboy Road, Wonder Valley (next to the palm tree cell phone tower)

If you have questions regarding this event, please call Code Enforcement Officer Melissa Malcom at 909-266-3477.

Download the flyer:

San Bernardino County Code Enforcement and Solid Waste Management Divisions will be providing bulky trash collection containers for the FREE disposal of accumulated trash, e-waste, and tires. Please bring your bulky items and trash to the designated container at the location listed below. This program is limited to the residents of the unincorporated County area.

We cannot accept commercial or industrial waste from businesses. Please remember to safely secure and properly cover your loads prior to traveling to the event.

If you are bringing waste tires, please limit your load to a maximum of 9 tires. Tires on rims WILL be accepted.

PLEASE NOTE: If you have oversized, loose, or hard-to-handle loads, you may be turned away to dispose of your waste materials at your own expense.

WE WILL ACCEPT household trash, bulky items, green waste and vehicle tires.

The Urban Conservation Corps will be present to accept electronics (TV’s, COMPUTER MONITORS, VCR’s, STEREOS, CELL PHONES, MICROWAVES & MORE)

WE CANNOT ACCEPT HAZARDOUS WASTE. This includes motor oil and oil filters, antifreeze, gasoline, drain cleaner, pesticides, fertilizers, fluorescent lights, wood preservatives, pool and hobby supplies, auto/furniture polish, paint thinners, paint products or similar products.

For current information, locations and times for the disposal of Household Hazardous Waste, please call the Household Hazardous Waste Program: 1-800-OILY-CAT (1-800-645-9228)

Sunday, March 1, 2020

Living and learning in Wonder Valley

Volume 2

Ah! The weather, who can predict it?  Mostly no one can but it's still useful to have some idea for sure as to when to batten down the hatches. Let's take today for instance. The day before yesterday thirty-one mph winds were forcast for our little neck of the creosote bushes but now? Down to twenty five instead. I've determined also that they will usually start about three hours after your app of choice says they will. Rain is an even bigger hit or miss scenario. It can be raining literaly a quarter mile from you and nary a drop will fall on your humble abode. I've found that any percentage below 70% should be taken with grain of salt. Unfortunately, when it does rain it comes down hard and fast and usually is going to flood out your dirt road. That's why it's always an excellent idea to have plenty of canned goods and water in good supply. It's good to be able to sit out a trip to town for a couple days while the flood subsides and the roads get fixed up. Just a reminder try not to go through big patches of still water unless you at least have an all-wheel drive vehicle or better a four-wheel drive truck.

Speaking of vehicles and getting stuck. There are a few roads that I will recommend staying away from without a four-wheel drive vehicle. Pole Line Road that runs East to West along the border of the Cleghorn Wilderness is one you should be very careful to avoid if possible. There are numerous very very soft sandy areas that will surely get you stuck. Ironage Road is another at the eastern end of Wonder Valley. When we first moved here we decided to go exploring on Ironage Road on a nice Sunday afternoon. We only had our two-wheel drive Ford F150 and quickly found ourselves stuck in the sand and couldn't get out. A call to a towing service in Yucca Valley which was the only one open on Sunday was quite disappointing in that the cost to pull us out of our predicament would be $900. Luckily we were able to call a friend who pulled us out of our pending disaster. One should always bring water and keep it in your truck whenever doing such exploring because flat tires can also be a problem out here in the desert. Having charged batteries to charge your phone is also useful in case you are stuck for any length of time. These batteries are quite inexpensive now and are indispensable out here in our desert wonderland. Many can be charged with solar and and are quite efficient at staying charged when not in use.

While you're out exploring it's best to understand that you shouldn't probably assume that a cabin is uninhabited and just walk right up to the property and go in. Being respectful of other people's property is one of the things that's very important in Wonder Valley. People don't take kindly to individuals just invading their space. In addition exploring abandoned cabins has its dangers and pitfalls. Be careful to not step on loose boards and clutter because one never knows what interesting creatures might be living underneath. Rattlesnakes and scorpions are known to love to hide under such clutter. Always wear good boots and socks and long pants when possible to protect yourself from unknown assailants. I highly recommend to err on the side of caution whether a home or cabin is okay to explore. Beware of old coots like myself who might take offense at interlopers with the look of hipster on their faces. The last thing you want is an old fart with a shotgun chasing you down a questionable exit road.

One last tip for this column, don't be in a hurry down any dirt road. Drive no more than  25 mph. Your neighbors will appreciate you for it and so will the allergies of the affected. Flying dust is something no one likes and many will just be angry at you for trying to run the Daytona 500 down a country road. In addition driving too fast on these roads creates a washboard effect that will surely make your electric windows fail long before they need to. It is surprising how many parts of your car can come loose from the constant vibrations caused by the rattle and roll.

That's all for this week desert dwellers.

Ronnie Ruff
Wonder Valley, California

Follow me on Instagram @RONNIECOSMICRUFF

All photos ©ronnieruff