Sunday, December 18, 2011

Livin' on Reds and Vitamin C and Cocaine

Here we are in Red Bluff, Cal, about half way down the yellow brick road.

So, what's the best way to prep for an extended road trip?  Go see the Nut Cracker of course!  Actually, the Nut Cracker was a pretty impromptu decision.  It just sort of hopped off the back page of the Daily Zero and into our consciousness.  Rather than a torturous, thoughtful, deliberate, decision making process, we just looked at what seating was still available for the Friday evening perfomance, found a couple seats in the mezanine that would give us decent views without breaking the bank and voila', just like in the MasterCard commercials we were there!  Only we didn't follow it with a fabulous 5 star late night dinner, a gondola ride, his n'hers massages, diamond rings and champaigne.

This is a local production at Olympia's unknown Gem, the Washington Center for the Performing Arts.  Amazing how they can get what looks like 285 dancers on the little stage with out the kids crashing into each other.  It wa a great and festive show.

But anyway, back to road trip prep:

This little culture shot would be completely inapproriate if we had not making slow and steady prep over the last few weeks.  We've been preparing for this trip rando style; you know, start at the start and just go slow and steady.  It worked pretty well, and as a result we were rolling away from the ranch just a little behind schedule, say oh dark fourty five as opposed to oh dark oh clock. 

The gremlins threw a few curves our way:  one of the latches on the car top carrier broke as I was putting the bikes up.  I used a couple reflective velcro ankle straps and a short bungie as a substitute hold down, nothing like redneck ingenuity.  I will admit to anexiety as strange creaking noises crept into the cockpit whenever passing big rigs, or at speeds much above 75.

In keeping with the theme of this trip, it was cold, rainy, and foggy all the way through Washington and most of Oregon.  Breaking over the summit of the Siskiyou's, blue cloudless skies and bright sun flooded the windshield.  We both broke out in spontaneous laughter:  Who thought to bring sunglasses? 

So far all has gone pretty well, I must say though that those little econo box car seats seem slightly more punishing than the last time I made this trip.  That was int he early 70's: 4 guys and a cooler full of animal beer stuffed into a '59 VW convertible between Christmas and New Years.  It was like going down the highway in a mobile meat locker: we kept the beer in the cooler to keep it from freezing.

Time to hit the hay and rest up for the final push tomorrow.

PS:  another hopeful sign:  it was 37 degrees out when we left, when we pulled off the ribbon of concrete, this evening it was 51 degrees.

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