What To Do During The COVID-19 Pandemic
“Anything that helps you to be happier every day is fantastic nourishment for the soul. The happier we are and the more positive our thoughts and actions become, the more easily we can manifest what we desire in our lives.”
The simple message, Boomers—go forth and explore. Find holiday treasures right in your own backyard or perhaps slightly down the street. Look for it and you will discover all sorts of lighting, music, joy and other festivities celebrating the holiday and Christmas season.
Most everything my BoomerGuy and I are doing is outdoors. We take walks at night in the neighborhood and then expand by going to various business districts and walking the lighted streets filled with boutiques and restaurants of all varieties. It’s also a great way to stop in and support your local businesses which are in need during this difficult time.
One of our favorite places to visit is the desert, specifically Palm Desert. Inasmuch as we lived there for so many years, we can always find unusual and wonderful places to explore–I think part of our heart is still living there especially at this time of year. Although some make it their full-time residence all year round with the summertime temperatures reaching over 110 degrees, this is definitely the season to visit. During the day the beauty of the desert is unparalleled with all the succulents and the bougainvillea in bloom—it is a majesty of colors. Thanks to the city planners for managing the large underground aquafer which helps to keep the grass and plantings lush all year long. At night, there is a special awe because of all the accent lighting not diluted with streetlights. The night sky is something truly to behold.
And when the holidays arrive, the desert puts on a new aura of activity and enjoyment. The snowbirds arrive to take up residence in their second homes, and the LA crowd descend on all parts of the Coachella Valley, but primarily Palm Springs, which they fondly call their ”happy place.”
The locals are not shy about decorating in colors of lime green and pinks with many blue accents giving it a feel like no other. They also add lights to the long trunks of the palm trees and to the palm fronds above them. In most cases, they leave these lights up all year for the nighttime enjoyment.
One of the annual trips we make is to walk El Paseo, which is often referred to as “Little Rodeo Drive” from the shopping district in Beverly Hills. The shops and restaurants are cautiously abuzz, even during this pandemic. Keep in mind, this is the southern California desert where the temperatures are extremely pleasant during the day and evening so outdoor dining is a natural.
But the pinnacle of the holiday sensation is the Living Desert. It is actually an outdoor zoo filled with live animals from around the globe and a botanical garden featuring indigenous and natural flora located in the heart of Palm Desert, nestled between the Sonoran Desert and Santa Rosa Mountains. At this time of year, they introduce Wild Lights which is a dazzling display of holiday lighting, with over a million lights, turning the entire area into a winter wonderland. It is an annual TRADITION for us, and this year Wild Lights is celebrating its 28th year. I just love that word, TRADITION—something we need more of during this highly unusual time in which we’re living.
You can enjoy the Living Desert during the day and at night, but of course the real treat at this time of year is to enjoy the animals at night, up close and personal, along with all the sparking, lighted life-size animation, lighted pathways and the highly popular tunnel of lights surrounded by a variety of holiday music, both pop culture and traditional. There is a G-Scale (garden size) train with over 3300 feet of track winding its way along the walking trails, in addition to vendors offering your choice of cuisine and beverages. It is recognized as being in the “Top Five Zoo Experiences” by USA Today.
If you do venture out to the Living Desert, be sure to look online or call in-advance, because they can be sold out. And be sure to bundle up as the evenings can be a bit chilly.
We stopped by the little house in Sun Lakes and were in awe of what the neighbors had done for decorating. Keep in mind, this is a senior development where many of the local residents are into their 80’s, but they get out not to be daunted by their aches and pains but to enjoy the season and show their creativity. The entry boulevard is decorated by volunteers with 28 different Christmas trees representing the various districts within the development.
I hope you enjoyed the tour and my message of inspiration, and as mentioned in the Home Page, Come On Boomers, Get Your Holiday Groove On. Dust off the decorations, have a glass of egg nog, and get out there and make it a celebration worth remembering.
“Life has all seasons. Some can seem longer than others, but all of them bring you closer to your purpose. The cold of winter eventually gives way to the warmth of spring. And during the darkest of days, you can huddle in the shadows, or you can embody the sunlight that is still there behind the clouds. Be the warmth that melts the snow. See and nurture the beauty that awaits.”