May 28, 2016, Carson City- The medical emergency which hospitalized an old friend, yesterday, has abated somewhat. As is usually the case in a responsible medical institution, she has been kept overnight and will be able to leave hospital tomorrow, if her condition holds and tests turn up negative.
So, with my anxiety thus relieved, I headed north from Prescott, at a suitably early hour ( 8 A.M.), stopping for a late breakfast at Westside Lilo’s, my restaurant of choice in Seligman, a fun, touristy town, some 34 miles northwest of Prescott. Lilo and her husband have had this German-Mexican fusion establishment since 1963. It, along with several other places in town, do a land-office business, owing to the popularity of the area as a pit stop between Las Vegas and the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. After a lovely chorizo scramble, and some banter with Lilo, I was off again, this time without the transmission issues that clouded last year’s Reno trip.
Being a holiday weekend, traffic through Kingman and Las Vegas was a fraction of what it normally is. I made it through the metro area in rather short time, choosing to stop at Indian Springs, on the far north side of Clark County, for a refueling.
U.S. 95 was characteristically sparse with traffic, most of it being commercial on this serene Saturday, and much of that was comprised of fuel tankers, of all things. A spot of rain in and around Tonopah, and again in the area east of Boundary Peak, gave a bit of a shake-up to the droning drive. Another point of interest is the transition zone between the Mojave Desert and the Great Basin. The Joshua Trees, and other plants native to the Mojave, fade out near Coaldale Junction, about an hour north of Tonopah. The Basin is largely grassland, at least in this area. Salt flats are a bit more common than I remember seeing, in previous visits. Then again, I was pre-occupied with the car last year, and may not have noticed.
Speaking of which, my stop in Hawthorne, just south of Walker Lake, was brief and uneventful this time. A tankful of gas was all that was needed. Looking in the restroom mirror, though, I saw a scruffy face, with an uneven shave, looking back at me. That may have explained the “30-45 minute wait” I was offered at Pizza Factory, near the Shell station. I moved on, taking a quick look at the lake, before heading to Carson City in greater earnest.
Walker Lake, NV
Mt. Grant, near Hawthorne, NV
It is still cool here, in the eastern reaches of Sierra Nevada, and it will be a while before Mt. Grant (above, right) sheds its snow cover.
The old friend whom I am visiting these next few days has, this very day, moved from Reno to Carson City, closer to her younger daughter and youngest grandchild. It is partly my purpose to help with the inevitable furniture moving and unpacking of boxes, as her settling in again continues. After a lovely drive through the scenic Smith Valley, with its towns of Yerington, Wellington, Gardnerville and Minden, punctuated by the gorgeous West Fork of the Walker river, I found it prudent to get a hearty dinner at El Charro Avitia, on Carson City’s south end. There, I enjoyed the delights of seafood enchilada and shared in the locals’ joy in their favoured Golden State Warriors’ come-from-behind victory.
It took a bit longer to locate my host’s new residence, but here I am, at the end of the day, and in the process helping her to note that her new apartment complex has two distinct sub-complexes. Out of confusion comes learning. I am fortunate to have several places where I feel like I’m with family. Tomorrow, a little angel will explain to me the world of cartoon dragons.