Today the Electronic Nomad is working form a perch above the Ashland Meat Company @ Cross Brothers Grocery. I have a brilliant view of the tracks along Railroad Avenue. My eyes and ears enjoy the sounds of each passing Amtrak and CSX train, and my stomach growls as I think about the sandwiches they are fixing downstairs, and the Baltimore & Ohio Roast Chicken they’re cooking across the street at the Iron Horse Restaurant.
The next time you’re tooling down I-95 between DC and Richmond, get off at Exit 92, head west to Railroad Avenue, turn left and park. Have a meal. Spend a few hours here. Spend a day. I guarantee you will be glad you did.
An uncommon sight in the Mojave National Preserve: snow, in the desert, and down below the 3500′ level.
As we drove, I explained to Aaron the difference between the “high deserts” and the “low deserts.” That difference was never starker than the week of December 23-30, when the demarcation between the two all but matched the snow-line.
All of which was a poignant reminder that the desert is not a single, simple climate zone, but can and does encompass a wide range of micro-climates as altitude and geography change, sometimes within a mile or two. Within each of these zones live varied but surprisingly diverse and and rich ecosystems camouflaged by what appear to the common observer to be desolate landscapes.
Of course, I am horribly biased: I do love the desert as much as I love the seashore, and the ache to live again in drier climes grows in me daily. Is it the Wandering Jew in my soul that misses these scenes? Does something inside of me yearn for Sinai and Galilee? Or do I simply treasure the solitude and the chance to commune in quiet with the Infinite, far from noise, crowds, and fog?
No matter. I will be back, and right soon.
Early Sunday morning in November on Santa Fe Avenue in La Junta, Colorado. I have only stepped off the train for a moment, and had to capture this.
I love train travel like no other means of transportation. As I get older, though, I find myself wanting to stop and spend more time in the places I pass through.
In the introduction to Desert Solitaire, Edward Abbey opines that in some places time passes slowly, and that all time should. I suppose that is why I find myself of late drawn to places where the hours meander languorously rather than sprint furtively.
I will be back to the high plains of Eastern Colorado, I know, but at some point I’d like to come in my truck and stay awhile. I’ll bet the biscuits are warm and flaky at the Copper Kitchen, that the espresso and banana bread a delight at The Barista, and that there are delightful folks here as well.
Found this on my phone, taken the morning after the tragedy.
As we enter the Holiday season, please join me in extending heartfelt prayers for the souls of those lost, for their families and loved ones, and for everyone touched by this gut-wrenching catastrophe.
It haunts me still, it will probably haunt me all of my life.
At their request, we took our Sea Scout ship camping at Lake Piru last weekend. In order to work themselves into a pre-kayaking sweat, the boatswain suggested a hike. Here we are near the end of our 4.7 mile trek through the September heat.
Needless to say, the Scouts were ready for lunch and some on-the-water time when they got back. A fantastic two days in the hills, and more proof that the BSA is just an unbelievable organization.
Hectic and short trip.
Stay classy, San Diego. See you soon!
Things I love about Amtrak: the box of healthy train treats handed out in Business Class on the Pacific Surfliner.
I brought food of my own (a habit I learned in China,) but these goodies are a nice supplement during the 5 hour trip.
Actor/musician Jack Black and his family were aboard as well. Very cool folks and the kids were impeccably behaved.