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Peace & quiet in Anza Borrego

The campground was full this weekend, for the New Year's Eve gatherings. But now that the crowds of RV'ers have departed, the park has fallen into a quieter state. Every morning I hear dozens of tiny birds chirping birds in the smoke trees and the fan palms. The purple-headed Costa's Hummingbird whips by too, so quickly that we often don't see it, but we hear the loud hum, like a giant bumblebee.

The campground is now half full, with retiree snowbirds doing whatever it is they do. We don't see many of them. After dark a few can be spotted sitting by a campfire with friends, but most of them seem to retreat inside to watch TV on their satellite dishes.

After dark I stood in the desert watching the sky for a while. It was the first clear night we have had since we got here. The Milky Way was splashed overhead and a crescent moon was framed by the big fan palms to our southwest. I could hear a night bird screaming overhead as it patrolled the campground, undoubtedly looking for a rodent to eat.

The town has gone quiet, too. Borrego Springs is basically defined by a central road that heads east-west. At the west, it dead-ends into the State Park headquarters and campground, where we live now. A mile further west and you'd hit the mountains, but there are no roads past the campground. To the east, we have a mile of not much, then a small strip of downtown.

We pass the quiet town on the way to anything else in the park. Gas $2.69, then an RV resort, an Inn, a couple of strip malls (grocery, lawyer, gifts, tacos, post office), a little Mexican market, real estate office, laundry, and the centerpiece of town: "Christmas Circle".

Christmas Circle is just a rotary with a patch of grass in the middle and a visitor center. To the north there are a few scattered subdivisions, to the east a few miles there is an airport, and to the south there is a slowly rising road called S3 (and later S22) that you can drive for 50 miles without leaving the desert park.

Borrego downtown.jpg

Being here now is like lingering after a big party. The place seems empty, but really, emptiness is its natural state. To someone who wants excitement, there is "nothing to do." But if you look more closely, there is too much to do. Once I finish some work, we will hopefully have time to do some more exploring today.

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