After our visit to Tucson, we headed to a surprise destination that I picked out for Choi’s birthday on January 21st, Palm Springs!
California is difficult to stay in right now as a van-dweller with most public campsites and gyms closed. But, Choi had mentioned that Palm Springs sounded like a fun place to visit, so I decided to splurge on a couple of nights in a hotel using Airbnb credits from last year’s cancelled trips.
We arrived in Palm Springs after one night sleeping at a not-too-restful rest stop where we woke at 2AM to what sounded like a car hitting the back of our van, but what was really dozens of horses stomping their hooves in the back of an 18-wheeler parked just behind us. Not the best sleep of our lives, but it could have been worse!
Palm Springs was a welcome rest for us. I’m not sure what the city is like in normal times, but in COVID-days it was pleasantly sleepy. We spent our first day working from a park, watching locals take their dogs out for walks and enjoying sunny skies and cool breezes through palm trees. After work, Choi took advantage of the lush, green grass and kicked around the soccer ball.
For two days, we had our hotel’s heated pool and hot tub almost to ourselves, biked around the city in the afternoons, and, in Choi’s words, ate lots of great food prepared by other people (a definite step-up from the many PB&Js we consumed the last week).
On our last morning in Palm Springs, we headed out to South Lykken Trail, a hiking trail near our hotel. It took some since convincing since I have a track record of both poor time management and a bad sense of direction, but I managed to persuade Choi to go on what turned out to be a ~5 mile trail run with me before we started work for the day. The run was steep at the beginning but quickly opened up to a beautiful viewpoint and then a smooth downhill back to our hotel. Luckily, my timing worked out and we made it back to our hotel in time for work.
We spent the rest of the day working at the hotel pool and then at a nearby park before spending the night at one of the plentiful free parking spots that line Palm Springs’ streets.
Palm Springs, we loved your restful vibe, mountain views, and delicious food! Along We Go!