Sunday, January 22, 2006

no grapes on the Grapvine

Ellen insisted on pancakes (blueberry, to use up the last of a can of blueberries purchased in, well, Arizona? maybe?) this morning, so in addition to sausages, we had pancakes. The sink was full of dirty dishes but no water with which to wash them. I always underestimate the amount of water we need boon-docking and HATE to drag water around the planet so I always err on the side of too little. Somehow, even with what I thought was a late start, we were on the road by 10:30. I have always avoided The Grapevine (in southern California) as it always seems to eat a handful of cars on each summit attempt. It really isn’t a bad drive but hauling something, I suppose it has a bad reputation in my mind. Plus, the very last speeding ticket I got was somewhere above the Grapevine; headed north, while doing somewhere around 80mph in a sporty Datsun 240Z. Back in the days…

As we approached the beginning of the Grapevine, the haze disappeared and the mountains rose above us; the only split in the mountain range holding the road crossing to the LA basin. It was an easy drive although I did 35-40mph on the ascent and 40-45 on the descent (speed limit on the descent was 40 or 45 depending). Only saw 3 cars pulled off the road being attended to. Unfortunately, I had completely forgotten about an incredibly dangerous roadside area as we approached Castaic. The kids saw Magic Mountain and much ado ensued. The boys then remembered a visit we’d made to Disneyland when I was pregnant with Sissy and the end of the story was pretty much written by then. I had planned on spending the afternoon at a park in Irvine and then boon-docking at the park or at a Walmart, but changed in midstream to find an RV park. We’re in the Silverado Canyon (or some other canyon east of Irvine and Tustin) WAY into the canyon. I spent about 2 hours trying to find the bird (satellite for internet) but too many trees and steep canyon walls nixed that idea. After spending all that time and energy Jamie found free wireless from someone here in the park. You’d think I’d learn; this is not the first, not the second and probably not the third time this has happened.

So tomorrow we try for Disney; I’m looking all over for discount tickets or some way to get cheaper tickets, but it just doesn’t look possible. The wind is simply amazing and I hope we stay at the top of this ridge tonight and don’t end up at the bottom of this canyon; it feels strong enough to push the trailer right off the edge. It sure didn’t look like smog remained in the basin today; could be recent rain or this incredible wind.

It was nostalgic driving through LA today; I spent 7 years here in the 80’s and worked in 4-5 different places and lived in countless. From 3 different beach communities to 3-4 different valley (San Fernando Valley) communities to inland. Sunday is absolutely The Only Day to drive through LA; I remember many 2 hour (one way) commutes; to go some 40 miles back in the day. The datastorm map is pretty accurate, but not completely accurate as I didn’t use exact lat/long. This park is pretty much pure permanent residents and they are all, well, pretty much all, completely LA crazy.

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