We took a day trip to one of my favorite places in Arizona on Wednesday, the small town of Quartzsite. If you are a rockhound you must have heard or maybe even visited this small town. It is located in the Arizona desert about 74 miles from Lake Havasu City, or 94 miles from Joshua Tree national park…OR another way to say it, “In the Boonies.”
Quartzsite is known worldwide for its gigantic Rock & Gem Shows. In the winter months it’s a small town of RVs & trailers; snowbirds escaping to the sun or rockhounds & prospectors coming to buy or sell rocks and equipment or find their fortune. A Wild West, rough-around-the-edges place, but very interesting.
I first visited Quartzsite 4 years ago and could not believe how cool the rocks, fossils and glass were…not my usual interest. But the colors are beyond words. Of course my point of view was in how pretty those colors and textures would look in home decor. But on this particular day-trip, at my favorite of the outdoor shops, it was the rusty metal barrels that caught my eye!
At first I noticed that the old barrels were used for display purposes, all painted a boring beige, with rocks piled on top and inside for customers to dig through. But when I walked around to the backside of the barrels…
happy dance! I could see their original paint & decayed condition! the shop-owner hadn’t bothered to paint the backside of some barrels. Chippy faded paint, so many colors…a little bit of heaven! Right ladies? (Look again at the main photo at top of post, that’s them)
After a a long time at that favorite shop, we drove to another area of town where there is a permanent tent city of vendors, all with rocks. You’ll never see so many rocks, crystal, and glass in one place, as in Quartzsite, from all over the world. I found a vendor with some Afghan stone beads & jewelry that was displayed so cleverly. I was drawn into the tent by all the colors!
See the fabulous colors? I only took a couple of photos because I could tell he thought I was kinda weird in doing so, but he was happy when I purchased two of his necklaces.
On my way to the car I began to notice the RV’s and trailers that were parked within the tent city. These are trailers that the vendors live in while at Quartzsite. They are pretty fun to look at since many are really old. This one caught my eye as I was wandering around.
After I shot the picture I heard a voice behind me say, “So, you like that decal Miss?” I turned and it was an old guy perched on a stool in another booth. I said, “Yes, I like that the decal says ‘Wyoming’, it’s cute against the (faded) fabric of the curtains.” He liked that, and told me proudly, ‘my wife made those curtains’…we smiled and I was off to my car. It was a fun day. I saw a lot of new things that I am sure were in plain sight during my past visits, but for some reason I never noticed. I look forward to going back to Quartzsite next year to discover what I missed on this day trip.
Have you ever visited a familiar place, only to see it through new eyes?
Frame Sources (in order) I used in this post (aren’t they fun!): Polaroid frame by Fuzzimo.com, and the stacked frames are from DesignerDigitals.com-KPertiet_ClippedStacksNo4-5s, and KPertiet_ClippedStacksNo2-2s.