I took a detour to school this morning. Actually, I didn't go to school. I went to another school for training. I took the back roads of Thermal and Indio home, instead of driving home on the freeway. You know, I should do this more often! I miss the date groves. And, I'm sad to report, that many of them are being bulldozed and replaced by housing developments in Indio and Coachella. I used to drive past miles and miles of groves. Now, very few are left. They are being planted on the lower (south) areas of the Coachella Valley, but those in Indio and Thermal and even Coachella are barely hanging on....sigh...what a waste! I specifically drove by my cousin's wife's birth ranch, which now has a tenant. I was pleased to see neat rows of crops growing and it looked in good shape. I didn't have time to take any photos of it, since I would have been facing the sun in the morning. But, I plan on driving home this way now at least once a month, to check up on the ranch, and also to see how the date groves are doing. This particular grove is right down the street, almost across from the Thermal ranch! It seems to be a frequent practice of turning out the cows among the date groves as they do eat the grass and weeds which grow between the trees. And, these cows were VERY curious! Maybe they thought I was coming with food? This Way Thursay and Think Green Thursday for February 25, 2010.