On the road again .... finalfuckinly!
I finish all the normal daily errands: bank, bills, post office, library and finish preparing for the trip packing clothes, food, supplies, arranging and rearranging truck space. I make my last Berkeley Bowl stop, skip my run for dark organic chocolate from Berkeley Natural Grocers and opt instead to indulge in dim sum on my way outta town!
By the time I leave, I am heading into rush hour traffic, stuck in Livermore for several long minutes - but I get to flash my billboard to probably thousands of commuters. The reaction is mild, given I'm so close to both a huge prison and the nuclear laboratory.
The last time a few months ago I headed down this road, a car full of soldiers almost lunged head-on into traffic they were so busy screaming 'fuck you' and flinging middle fingers out the window of the shiney new white dually pick up truck.
This time, I get several casual honks, peace signs, grins - and a couple baffled blank "huh?"s.
My first stop is a rest area on I5. I stretch, attempt to heat up my coffee but it seems I'm outta propane, so I que up a book on tape and begin to drive into slowly fading light.
By the time I reach the turn off for Bakersfield, it is almost pitch black out, which is good because I have to climb the Tehachapi mountain, over 4000 feet high, and the combo of heat and incline cause the needle on my temperature gauge to also climb.
My truck doesn't mind heading up mountains in the cool of the dark night. I drive all the way to the mojave desert before climbing into the back to take a brief sleep. I still have desert and more mountains to climb before it gets too hot tomorrow!