Day Twenty-two by Dave Schultheis
Monday, August 18, 2003 - Weed, California
I slept well, and thankfully, in a nice, warm bed with clean sheets. I was awake at 5:55 a.m. (my old "alarm" time, when I was working) and got up at 6:00 a.m.
Darn the luck. I had a splinter in the bottom of my left foot. Ow! With surgical assistance from my Buck knife, I think I removed the splinter, washed the wound and put first-aid lotion on it, then dressed, packed and loaded the bike, and checked out of the motel.
I left at 7:00 a.m., 55 degrees, wearing my lucky green shirt, and got onto southbound Interstate 5, where the temperature felt cool.
There were several areas of construction and some 55 mph zones with Highway Patrol officers present. I also came upon some radar-equipped signs for 60 mph curves with "your speed is..." indicators, one of which was quite wrong about my speed, but managed to get the message across.
At 8:10 a.m. I took exit 687 and stopped for fuel at a Shell Station near Mountain Gate, where it was 86 degrees and fuel was very expensive.
From there, I continued south, stopped for a CA Highway 151 photo near Shasta Lake, then got into Redding, took a CA Highway 44 picture, passed through Anderson and Red Bluff, 83 degrees, then through Corning (the olive capital of the world), Orland, Artois, Willows, Maxwell, Williams, Arbuckle, and into Dunnigan at 10:20 a.m., where it was 80 degrees and I removed my lucky green shirt at a Jack-in-the-Box and had a light breakfast.
[Trash Rant: what is wrong with people? Do they think it is appropriate to throw their trash out the car window? Here is was, not even lunch time yet, and there was food debris and ketchup packets in the parking lot. Have they ever heard of trash bags? Or wastebaskets? Is it too far to walk to put your garbage in a garbage can?]
One mile south, I stopped at a combination gas station and Wendy's, but a water line was broken and the restrooms were out of service, so I had to continue to the next rest area to check the porcelain.
[Porcelain Rant: why do they close restrooms when the water is off? I know it's not pleasant "to go where someone has gone before," but running water is _not_ mandatory. Try this experiment. Take a bucket of water and pour it slowly into your toilet. It will _not_ overflow. As much as you keep pouring water in, it keeps draining out. Toilets are _designed_ that way! There's no reason why "gentlemen" can't continue to use the toilets, as long as they're notified that there is no water for washing hands. If the sewer line is plugged up, that's another, much more disgusting, problem.]
At 11:35 a.m., I stopped for fuel at the Shell Station on the south side of Sacramento at Pocket Road/Meadowview Road, where it was 84 degrees, and then continued to Dave and Pandora Clements' favorite rest area, the Elk Grove Boulevard turnout, at 11:55 a.m., where it was 83 degrees.
I called Dave and apprised him of my progress, then continued down I-5, then west on I-205, west on I-580, south on I-680, north on I-280 and south on Meridian Avenue, stopped at the Willow Glen post office (92 degrees) and once again at Wolf Camera to drop off LPCs, and one final stop at Albertson's (grocery store) before pulling into my garage at 3:20 p.m. Whew!
This was the end of a 22-day, 21-state trip, although it seemed like much more of both.
Miles for the day = 369. Miles for the trip = 7238.
Thanks to my aunt and uncle in east Texas for their hospitality enroute. I wish I could have stayed longer. I will come and visit again, and see the new barn.
Thanks to T.L. Mitchell and Sue for their nice hospitality at the Lair in the Woods, the scenic tours of the area, and guide services to the dealership, to the firewood merchant and to the campground. I couldn't have done it without you.
Thanks to Roger _the other one_ Peterson for allowing me to link to photos of the Eddie Kieger birthday party.
Thanks to the folks in the Pacific Northwest for their excellent hospitality and assistance. Those two days away from the hustle and bustle were very welcome.
And thanks again to those who have read and commented on these daily reports; I appreciate the feedback.