We settled on going to Joshua Tree for our honeymoon back in May, and I honestly don't think we even considered any other option. It was always: "Let's go to Joshua Tree."

We stayed in the Saguaro Hideaway Guesthouse, which was located five-minutes from the entrance to the park, and five-minutes from the one-block town of Joshua Tree. You can only access the house by dirt roads, which take you up and out of the valley a bit, to a secluded spot overlooking the mountains. The sun would rise around 5am each morning and strike pink light across the horizon and through the large windows into our house. We somehow never really changed time-zones, and ended up going to bed at 8pm and waking up at 5am with the sun. I wish we could do that every day.

We didn't really do all that much, in the best sense; we were usually either eating, sleeping, or hiking. We drank a lot of Joshua Tree Coffee Company's coffee, and ate the most satisfying cheese and egg bagels from Natural Sisters Café. Joshua Tree is sort of a quirky place: lots of climbers and hiker-types traveling through, and a handful of hippies who have settled there for good. It's quiet, especially in November, I'm guessing.

Our longest hike, along the Willow Hole Trail, took us deep into the strange silence of the rock formations. There is, of course, not a lot of visible life in the desert, or at least, that which would be apparent on the surface. So, it was always surprising to be walking along and suddenly hear a few birds chirping in a juniper bush, or see a handful of ants making their way into a hole, or catch a glimpse of a coyote far and away up a rock formation. Something about the desert landscape forces attentiveness, and maybe that's why I like it so much.

On our last day, we travelled back to Los Angeles. We splurged and stayed at the Ace Hotel, and all I can think about is the shampoo and the drinks we shared on the rooftop bar and how ridiculous it was that every person that worked there looked like an Urban Outfitters model, even (especially) the bell boy who took us to our room.

Our favorite places in Los Angeles: The Last Bookstore (huge, wonderful bookstore with a great art books section, just a few blocks from the Ace Hotel), Sqirl (long lines and sorrel pesto rice bowls for breakfast, which were so good we went twice), and lots of home goods stores, including: General Store, Individual Medley, and Reform School. I don't think we actually bought anything, but just perused around all the pretty things. And at Proof Bakery we shared the best earl gray tea cakes.

A honeymoon is such a particular time: the sudden quietness in the wake of the wedding, and the expectancy of a whole life together in front of you. There's so much to take in. And there is something, too, about the realization that you are about to spend a life with another person, and suddenly your love feels small, insignificant, as if it has much growing to do. Which it does, and that growing is demanding and magnificent all at once.

[all Honeywell Pentax, 35mm film]