July 22-27, 2019, Carson City-
In my life since 2011, there have been a few constants: My community in Prescott, wherever my son is, Birth Family on the East Coast, friends all over the country and my northern Nevada family, here and in Reno.
I have made at least one stop here, each year since 2012, when I joined Michele and Tom on a road trip to the Bay Area, for a Baha’i commemorative. He passed on, a year later, making a visit with Michele, like a sister to me, that much more urgent. The kids are always a good part of the mix, to say the least. So, when V was given a part in a community theater’s rendition of “The Little Mermaid”, I set aside this week for my annual jaunt.
After a veritable pit stop in Prescott, I drove up to Kingman, on Sunday evening. That cut three hours off Monday’s drive which, other than slow traffic stemming from an accident, just shy of the state line. I noted that Rosie’s Den, a place in White Hills, where I had stopped a few times, to and from Nevada, had closed. Iron Horse Cafe, in Henderson, was my first stop. Being still the morning commute rush, as I passed through Las Vegas, no stops were made there.
That meant lunch was in Beatty, about 3/8 of the way north. This old mining town has its funky side- the huge Death Valley Nut and Candy Store and, until last year, a motel in an old trailer park. Then, there is Sourdough Saloon, where one enters-finds an empty bar (before noon, anyway) and goes in the back, where a lone waitress is glad to see anyone.
The fare at Sourdough is simple, but on par with road food I’ve found anywhere. For some reason, Pastrami Cheeseburgers are a fairly big thing in western Nevada. Sourdough’s is tender and moist.
I hadn’t noticed on earlier passes through town, but looking at the ridge north of Beatty, it seems a Teddy bear is keeping watch.
Another constant on my drives north is a stop at Beans and Brews, a small coffee house inside Three Deserts 76 gas station, in Tonopah. The shop is run by high school and college students, who never drop the ball when it comes to congenial service and generous portions of iced coffee, espresso and lattes. (Photo, courtesy of http://www.beans andbrews.com)
The rest of the drive was made easier by the stop at B & B. I noted that Walker Lake is higher, this year, than in the past seven. The word is that the flow from Walker River has been increased.
Much of Michele’s focus, and mine, is on the little family of four: V, her parents and infant brother. Father is a multifaceted artist, whose work includes murals.
The week included many long conversations about mindfulness and holistic health (always a concern with us Boomers), the efficacy of fairy tales (specifically the message presented by some Disney versions) to child development, and how best to approach the welter of social movements in our time. Chess with V was actually more challenging than one would think it would be, with a 7-year-old opponent. She has a fine analytical mind. We each won a match.
The play, Friday night, featured V as one of the Starfish. They appeared in one scene, dancing to the song, “Under the Sea”. It was heartening to see the turnout- a packed house for opening night. As with any child, I leave it to V’s parents to determine whether to share photos from the occasion.
Here, though, is a video clip of the song.
It’s been another good week, which I hope augurs well for Fall up here. I know that my own autumn will be a full one.