July 23, 2012 | After a day spent trying to convince Sophie that I really wanted to go via the route I wanted to go, I set out on Saturday morning for Twain Harte for a visit with Bob and Carolyn. I was vindicated in my judgment of the route, inasmuch as I hardly saw a car for the first two hours of the trip, and accomplished the 463 miles in 8hrs 45min.
About that route: Heretofore I had always left the desert via the I-10 to I-210 to the I-15 to US-395 to CA-58 across the Bakersfield. This time, however, I tried a new route up through Yucca Valley to Barstow and thence the CA-58 to Bakersfield. Not only was it shorter, but there was an absolute dearth of traffic once I climbed out of Yucca Valley into the high desert.
Sophie, in her infinite wisdom, was determined that I should go north via Los Angeles and the I-5. Even when I attempted to re-orient her by putting in intermediate destinations, she insisted that I should go back to LA and take her preferred route. I finally got her sorted out by making my destinations points along my preferred highways. "Are you sure you want to set your destination on the freeway?" she would ask incredulously. "Yes, Sophie, I do — get over it!" This did lead to some amusing announcements out in the middle of nowhere: "You have arrived at your destination."
When I did arrive at my destination, I found the cabin deserted; a note with a cell-phone number fluttered from the door knocker. I made myself at home on the deck and called. "Are you here already?" Well, yeah! "We'll be right there." A few moments later, Bob and Carolyn came trudging up the hill from town, for a proper welcome. Thankfully they also opened the door so I could visit the water closet, the need for which was becoming more urgent.
Twain Harte had its summer festival over the weekend, and the main street (all 1 block of it) was blocked off for a street fair with an impressive number of booths hawking handcrafts to hokum, along with booths for food and drink. A tri-tip sandwich seemed in order, although the fried artichoke hearts also had a strong appeal. To be sure, I did make something of a spectacle of myself as a glob or horseradish kicked in to clear the sinusus. Yeow!
Sunday evening, two other couples were invited over for drinks and dinner, and we did have a lively conversation covering the usual gamut of topics, from an anecdote about the big-haired Texas woman Bruce encountered in a in Waco, Texas, bar on a recent trip and her pungent reply when he informed her he had voted for, and would vote for again, Barack Obama to the politics of Tuolomne County, to the annual [really] "bad-taste" parties.
The weather is lovely, with clear blue skies, low humidity, and pleasant temps. Bear in mind that "pleasant temps" is a relative term; the locals seem not to describe them the same way.
Last updated on May 21, 2016