Top 7 things I've learned about California so far:
1) I've finally determined the last place on earth that I want to live: Needles, California. All the expense of living in california without any of the benefits, AND it was over 100 degrees. Door handles had towels taped over them to protect customers from burning themselves. On the DOOR HANDLEs. and the windows of our car in the part of the world were HOT TO THE TOUCH. On the INSIDE.
1.5) They are extremely UNwaterwise. I saw sprinklers going off at 2 pm when it was over 100 degrees out, and LAWNS. In the MOHAVE DESERT.
2) They like to shutdown one lane of main arteries (I40) for no apparent reason. Here we were, crawling along in the middle of the Mohave Desert, at 10 mph. there will be signs that say, "damaged bridge ahead," and one surmises that one might plunge headlong into some rushing water. In the desert. I never saw a damanged bridge, by the way.
3) California drivers drive slowly on the right, and pass on the left. Or not. Depends on their mood. They pointedly ignore signs telling slow-moving vehicles to move to the right. Also, Califonia drivers driving 30 foot long windegegos do not consider themselves trucks, even though they suck gas and cruise around 40 mph on the highway.
4) I saw Lone Pine, CA, through which the Badwater Ultra Marathon goes on its way from Death Valley to the top of Mt. Whitney. Holy cow. These people run from 70 feet below sea level, at over 100 degrees, 135 miles to 12,000 above sea level, at freezing temps.
5) They really, really, really want you to know how to get to death valley from nearly every part of California. There are signs at most intersections telling pointing towards it and telling you hw far it is. I've decided that this is a clever way to keep too many people from moving in. Reroute them to Death Valley.
6) If you're going to drive through the Mohave desert, get your windows tinted.
7) As soon as you cross into California, two things happen. First, the cost of gas immediately jumps by a dollar per gallon, and armed people stop your car and ask if you have any produce or live plants. You can't bring either into California. They don't check for drugs or ask if you've been drinking, just fruit and plants.
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