It’s 1047 and we’re about eleventy-two miles into our final leg.
We both slept better last night, mainly because I remained more vertical than horizontal which help me not snore so much. Diane likes that part.
We both woke up before 0730 this morning, and slowly worked up to beginning this last day on the road. The to our room shut behind us at 0910, and we had everything loaded and rolling out of the parking lot by 0915. Then there was the requisite stop at the base gas station for a refill. We stopped there yesterday but non of the pumps were working, so we went to the exchange and commissary instead. This time they worked just fine and I was able to coax a tank of $4.09 a gallon gas into our tank. I think it took a little over 19 gallons. From there we went back to the Starbucks, which is part of the Exchange complex, for our morning brew. Diane’s is caramel machiatto, mine is white chocolate mocha. The biggest they have. While I was getting our drinks, Diane bought me a T-shirt. She wasn’t pleased with the ones I brought because they all have neckties printed on them.
On the way out the main gate I took pictures of the airplanes on display to share with you.
Apprehension builds as we travel south, knowing we must enter Los Angeles early this afternoon. The only upside is it’s mid day, not during rush hour. Still, we know it’s going to be a slow, arduous, dangerous transit from the Grapevine through the city. It will be exciting, but we will make it okay.
I’ve been playing with my phone to see how siri works. Pretty soon she’ll have me trained so ask questions in the proper manner so whe won’t have to quiz me. It’s a pretty handy feature. My iPad even has it. How cool is that. And, just a bit ago, Diane had me use her phone to call her Mom, Jean, to see how things are going today. That’s a morning regular, once we get on the road … call Mom … just for fun, I tried to invoke siri on Diane’s phone, but she’s only got an iPhone 4, not a 4S like mine, so she doesn’t have siri. She does, however, have Voice Control, that pops up when you hold down the conrtrol button long enough, and I just told it to “dial Jean”. After a short pause she asked me which one, as there are a few Jean’s in the contacts list. I clarified, and she dialed Mom right up. Jean, by the way, is still doing okay, for which we’re thankful.
It’s 1309 – do you know where your children are?
We just crested the summit of Tejon Pass at the top of the Grapevine leading into LA. It’s 4144 feet high. I know that for sure because there was a sign. It was the same sign we’ve seen on the dozen or so times we’ve climbed that hill. Apparently it hasn’t sunk any.
About an hour ago, we took a small detour, allowing siri to lead us into Bakersfield for lunch at the closest iHop restaurant it could find. It was a really good choice,, getting away from the freeway for food. Cheaper, too, although it cost us a little extra time. We both had their Two x Two x Two … that’s 2 eggs, 2 pieces of bacon, and two pancakes. Diane got her eggs and bacon cooked twice, just the way she likes it, and mine were both over easy. I put my eggs between my pancackes so the yolks wouldn’t run all over my plate. Tasty.
The road at the top of the Grapevine is terrible … lumpy bumpy holey. Caused, no doubt, by the billions of trucks that drive transit the area every 2-3 days. We’ve seen at least a million and a half. There is construction going on with signs it will be finished in 2015. So, it’s improving, and appears to be finished on the southern side, both directions. Four lanes of new asphalt allowing everyone, except us, to go 100 mph, or more.
It’ 1330 and LA is 50 miles away. We’re almost to the final downhill side because trucks are pulling into the brake check area. Every time we come this direction I tell Diane the story of my trip down this hill in my 1964 el Camino in 1966. I was just cruising along, keeping up with traffic, when I crested the hill. Going around the first corner I look ahead to see brake lights about 1/4 mile ahead, so touched the brakes and not a lot happened. So I pushed harder, and felt a bit of slowing, but not enough. I started down shifting my 4-speed to help slow down, but the vehicles ahead were gaining on me with frightening speed. Finally, I just shifted to neutral and locked up all the wheels, pushing on the brake as hard as I could. I put flat spots on all four of those tires before the car came to a stop about 5 feet from the car in front of me. It was a miracle that the car slid straight for about 300 feet, never leaving my lane. The end result was that it appeared I did exactly what I had planned to do all along … scare the crap out of everyone around me without causing any damage. Pretty amazing.
******* M U C H ***** L A T E R *******
We made it to the Navy Lodge in San Diego shortly before 5pm, and, Diane drove the entire way. I offered to help, numerous times, but she always declined stating she was just fine. Now it’s a quarter to 10pm, we’ve eaten supper, and are learning how to hunt down killers from a TV program. It’s one we watch a lot, but for the life of me I cannot remember the name. Not really surprising. I just asked Diane and learned it’s “Criminal Minds”. Duh! That’s just added proof that I can’t get along in this world without Diane.