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Late Great Golden State

imageimageBeen out west for the better part of the last two months and it was an intense visit. “Put a kettle on,” as someone from my past once advised .. but her tea was suspect, too. Now I’m pointed east for the long haul to New York and figured I’d keep a road journal. So far so good, but a two hundred mile drive to Tahoe is only a drop in the proverbial bucket. Got some rain in that bucket, though, just past Auburn on I-80. Then on to Truckee for a quick beer and shot at the Pastime Club, where a small late afternoon crowd was just getting started. I was at the Pastime about fifteen years back with my friend Mo Allen when the bartender announced that “a gentleman name ‘Bear’ would like to buy a round for the entire house.” So we lined up in orderly fashion for our free beverage. “You know, Rick,” Mo observed, “this kind of stuff only happens to you.” I thought of pointing out that it was happening to everybody in the bar on that particular afternoon, including him, but refrained. At the end of the day a free drink is no great shakes, but it beats a swift kick in the pants. A family cabin with fireplace on a chilly late October evening, however, is definitely a great-shakes qualifier. And while I’ve never traveled the length of this great country by car, I strongly suspect that there isn’t much out there that beats Lake Tahoe for a solidly spectacular setting. Truth be told, I could just park it here and be satisfied. But I already have a $47 hotel room booked in Salt Lake City and will be pointing myself in that direction tomorrow. Stay tuned to this space for updates — hopefully with a little more punch and literary flair. And remember to read from the bottom-up.

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