I haven't seen the Castillos in a long time. My aunt came to visit about a year ago, but her kids had the audacity to grow up and become people since I'd last seen them years ago. I find it intolerable that I'm that old, but I suppose I can allow it for now.
They live just outside Seattle, WA, in a house built out of love of the craft. My uncle constructs landscapes and interiors with heavy natural influences, my aunt is a masseuse and healer, and their combined efforts have made a residence the flows with a wonderful energy, an energy they reinforce with a welcoming and energizing lifestyle.
As promised, I'm going to post some of the pictures I've taken on my travels so far. I'll be breaking them up into regions to save space. This post will cover everything between Houston, TX, and Chandler, AZ.
As an Indiana boy, born and raised, I'm used to lots of green and either flat plains or gentle hills (when not dealing with circles of racetrack or corn dogs). Thus, any natural occurrence of desert or mountains astound me. Case in point:
I spent the night just outside of Carlsbad, NM. As a fan of Lee Child's Jack Reacher novels, I've read a lot of scenes that take place in cheap motels. This one came with a layer of dust. If it weren't for Lee Child, I'd have been displeased.
I woke up early so I could walk through Carlsbad Caverns and still make it to Chandler in one day. I'm going to spoil it for you - I could have spent a lot more time there. The drive up alone was gorgeous.
The walk into the Caverns was a winding path that inched me closer to this open, black pore of the planet. Signs everywhere remind one to stay quiet or else the bats will get upset by the swarm. Slightly intimidating.
It took me a while to figure out the settings on my phone to catch images in the dark.
The first one I got to work was for a formation that looked like a totem pole via H. R. Giger.
Finding the Bat Cave was easy. Why did Joker make it seem like such a big deal in Death of the Family?
The picture may not be great, but try to imagine being in the middle of a football stadium that's made of stone carved over millions of years and is otherwise empty. It's kinda like that.
My car sometimes thinks it's a jungle cat.
I took the same road out that I came in on. I have no idea how they managed to fit an entirely different vista into the same road, but I appreciate the effort.
Next update is going to have Arizona and San Diego highlights. Thanks for waiting!