Last week my fiancée and I took a brief vacation. (Why brief? Because the economy sucks and we have a wedding to try to pay for next year.) And for our affordable getaway we drove two hours east to Palm Springs.
You may be thinking: Palm Springs? Affordable?
It's still summer in the desert, so finding good deals on midweek hotel rates isn't too hard.
We didn't just sit in the air-conditioned hotel room. On Monday we explored the Coachella Valley, driving down Palm Canyon Drive east, eventually hitting Indio. This wasn't entirely accidental; my fiancée had read about a place we wanted to check out.
The Shields Date Garden.
(It's over there.)
Sure, it's a date farm with a grove of date palms next to it (see a couple shots of them here). And they have a counter with stools where one can order a date shake (which tastes like caramel). But that's not the real draw.
You can learn about...
That's right: They have a 108-seat theater in their store continuously showing a 15-minute film titled "Romance and Sex Life of the Date". And it's completely free!
And if they'd had air conditioning rather than just really big fans in there, we probably would have sat through the whole thing. Nonetheless, we did see the last four minutes or so of the film, which, unfortunately, was all about the history of Mr. Shields starting up the date farm back in the 1924, with nothing about the touted sex life of the date (that part must be in the earlier portion).
So if you go, try and get there early in the morning and try to catch the beginning of the movie.
Or if you want, you can order it on DVD (seriously), and see it in the comfort of your own home.
Get yourself a shake for the road. They're quite tasty.
More pictures from our days in the Palm Springs area can be seen on the useless photo site. Looking at them may be kind of like having a bit of an affordable vacation yourself.