Check out Part 1 of this post here!
One of the completely unexpected pleasures of my sobriety has been the occasions where, thanks our editor extraordinaire Aly, I get to venture out into nature with a big group of sober friends for a weekend. The positive vibes and grand scenery set the stage for creating some awesome memories! As such, our recent trip out to Joshua Tree definitely had its share of memorable moments.
I drove up to the campsite on a Friday (the 13th!) with my friends Peter and Christy. On the way, we encountered some crazy weather, unbelievably beautiful snow capped mountain ranges, a casino that we almost decided to stop at (LOL Peter) and a big fat rainbow.
Upon actually getting to J-Tree, we realized that it had been snowing all day. This made for some awesome photo ops but some dangerously chilly camping conditions.
Instead of freezing ourselves the first night, we figured it may be better to not battle nature’s wrath and just stay indoors. Hilariously, all 16 of us decided to get rooms at the nearby Super 8 Motel. Split amongst 4 rooms, we ordered pizza, hung out, did some group meditation, and watched movies! All fun and games, until that dreaded moment when someone made the inevitable joke: “Hey, this is like, how horror movies start! A bunch of young people in a motel in the middle of nowhere, on Friday the 13th!” I kid you not, 10 minutes later the power for the whole block went out. It was legitimately a little scary.
Having bought flashlights for camping, some of us went to our cars to grab them. Right as we got back with the flashlights, the power came back on. It seemed like a very well timed practical joke that the universe had played on us.
The next morning we went back to the campsite and set up everything properly. The snow had melted away and the weather was much warmer.
After camp was set up we hung out for a bit, made some sandwiches for lunch and headed out on our hike.
The hike to 29 Palms was relatively short, but it was still a vigorous workout. I like to think that there’s something about the fresh air in nature that gets me breathing harder. Either that or, maybe I’m just out of shape. Who knows?
In any case, along the way I was struck by the (literally) breathtaking austerity of the desert.
After the hike we headed back to camp and settled in for the evening. We all cooked hot dogs and s’mores over a roaring campfire. Our friend Paris busted out some lavender oil and sage and we did a group meditation! Some of us sober people (e.g., me) are really into new age woo-woo kinda stuff. It’s AWESOME!!
Even though it was still really chilly that night, some warm clothes and good company made the experience more than worth it. We stayed up for a few more hours, sharing our stories and looking at the stars.
Again and again I find that the best part about being sober has been the amazing people that I get to meet and build relationships with. The whole thing has been completely unexpected. If you’re struggling with sobriety or are just getting sober, I would highly recommend trying to get connected with other people like you! You never know what kind of amazing stuff is right around the corner.