Thursday, 10 March 2011


PUSHED TO THE WASTELANDS--- Today I will penetrate the deep bushlands to find the camps of individuals living there out of necessity and not choice like yesterday's folks. But first,I show you this reproduction of an Indian hut on the banks of the Colorado.
Out there is where I begin my hunt
A surprisingly neat camp with nobody home---I will try to catch its owner another time.
This camp---some distance away seems abandoned---note the mess he left---so often I find poverty teamed with messiness.
As with this camp--definitely being used.
Zooming in we get a glimpse of his lifestyle. I think he may have been sleeping on the left side of the tent---didn't wake him.
I kept my eyes peeled on the area for some time hoping to engage a "bush" person. Saw this one but failed to intercept him.
But later that day I found him scuffling around in the bushes---PICKING UP TRASH---He agreed to talk to me.
Gentle and soft-spoken---said he likes to keep the area clean---That the neat camp was his---been there for some months--cannot afford to pay rent---Has no job---lives on a subsidy--was cheerful and likable.
five miles away---near the canal --I came to see if an acquaintance was still living here. For three years he claimed a "hole" in this patch of tamerisk trees as home--returning nightly. Can you see the cleverly concealed entrance?
Here is the hole--he would drive his car in here and sleep in it. He carried a kitten around inside his shirt. Guess he's moved on. (that's my coat)
This is off the subject but I wanted to show you the seeming wholesale waste of the lettuce pickers. My companion took a head---perfectly good---we puzzled till someone explained that they were rejected for being too large or too small.
We stopped to investigate this phenomenon. The red flags mean--don't pick here.
Moving in closer we see this sign. Later, we learned that a single footprint---of a human or a dog-- found in a field will quarrantine everything around it---being super careful after the contamination scare of a few years ago.
Now, back to my story--engaged this refugee from Ohio--took him3 months and 3 bikes to make the trip---he asked where he could camp free---I directed him to the bushes near the casino.
RANDY PHILOSOPHIZES---I think I've differentiated two types of Wasteland dwellers---those DRAWN to it and those PUSHED to it. Jesus, Buddha and Mohammed spent time in the wastelands--- suggesting something----but what??? I've found that I'm happiest in the desert. Studies show that humans are more emotionally attached to Savana environments than any other. Logically because that's where we came from. I think we should allow everyone a place to BE. Even if it be in the bushes or desert. That spiritual seekers and the moderately mentally disturbed be allowed to dwell unmolested on the fringes of society. Its far better than the streets and even better than shelters in my opinion. A nation that phohibits mavericks will inhibit genius.

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