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ON THE ROAD WITH A CAMERA PHONE
22 October 2006
I suspect most people don't prepare for a trip the way I do.
"What are you wearing to the wedding?" Peggy asked me recently. Here it is, 18 hours before I actually pack up the car and I haven't decided yet. Probably something I wear to the theatre all the time. I thought about going shopping when I get to Santa Barbara and get something new, but then the idea of spending money on yet another pair of black pants I'll look like shit in doesn't appeal to me, so probably my black velvet pants and some top that fits. God, I hate looking like this... but obviously not enough to do something that I can keep doing.
So back to getting ready. I have put all of the necssary battery recharging equipment into the laptop computer case (battery recharger for digital camera, cord for recharging video camera, and recharger for the cell phone). I've packed all the extra mini DVD tapes, SD cards, microphone, and cameras into the new camera bag I bought yesterday. I also set up shell entries for every day that I'll be gone so I can just type journal entries in HTML and add them when it's time (if you want to see how that works, click on "next" below this entry and see what you get!) I also set up a file on Google Docs & Spreadsheets so I could start this entry from home and log into it when I get to Santa Barbara.
I called up several web sites and have booked us (myself and the Irishwomen, Nora and Kathy) at a hotel in San Luis Obispo and an Embassy Suites in Monterey (where it sounds like I'll actually have a recliner to sleep in, in my own room. Yay! Easily worth the extra money), and let my mother know we'll stay with her one night because I can't find a single "good" hotel in SF that has available room for that one night. I've also contacted my friend Gerry, with whom I am staying when I'm actually IN Santa Barbara, and asked if I can invite Nora and Kathy to dinner Saturday night. And I made reservations for a tour of Hearst Castle. I entered the hotel phone numbers and reservation numbers into my cell phone and set up a folder for all the pertinent web site print-outs.
I downloaded two audio books from Audible.com and burned them on CD so I'll have one book to listen to on the way down and Walt and I will have something to listen to on the way back. I made arrangements for Lizzie to go to an SPCA foster home, for Sheila to go to the kennel, and for Walt to borrow a car to get her there.
What I have NOT done is: even thought about what I'm going to pack, checked to see if I have clean clothes, decided if I can fit everything in a small suitcase or if I have to take the huge one, bought a bridal shower gift, or, obviously, even STARTED to pack. I have not had my hair cut, which it needs, and probably won't before the wedding.
From Santa Barbara
Well, I made it. I actually left Davis right when I said I would: 9:30 (which is "between 9 and 10). I listened to talk radio until it started fading, and then started my Audible book, "The Cat Who Came to Breakfast." The book is 6 discs long and it ended when I was about 20 minutes from my destination. How's THAT for good planning?
Traffic was bad. Even on I-5, which is always the road where you have to watch yourself because you can easily get up to 90 mph without realizing it, the top speed through a good portion of it was 65 mph because of all the traffic.
It was fun this trip, though, because as I traveled, I was not only taking video, but sending cel phone camera pictures to Ned and Jeri so they could keep track of progress.
I cut over to 101 from I-5, on Hwy 41, the road that James Dean was killed on, and took a bit of video there. Then down to Santa Barbara. As I approached San Luis Obispo, you go over Cuesta Grade, a rather steep section of the highway. When I reached the top, I could see cars backed up for a long way and feared that it was backed up all the way into San Luis Obispo (quite a distance). However, as I began inching my way down the grade, I could see CHP cars and then discovered a trailer which had flipped right in the middle lane and it was blocking traffic on both sides as we tried to get around it. Didn't look like anybody was hurt.
As I came into San Luis Obispo, my friend Gerry (my co-hostess for my time here) called my cell phone, so I got off the freeway to talk with her and then, shortly after that Walt called as well, so I got off the freeway again. By the time I got back on the freeway again, traffic was once again backed up as far as I could see. Gerry had pointed out that it was Friday, and that was probably why traffic was so heavy. But no, this was just another accident. This one had an ambulance attached to it, unfortunately.
From there it was clear sailing into Santa Barbara, a lovely reunion with Dick and Gerry, a thirst-quenching gin and tonic and great crab cakes for dinner, and now I'm holed up in Gerry's office using her computer and will soon find myself a place to sleep. I have a lovely bedroom and I didn't let them know that I have my eye on that lovely couch in the living room!
BUMPER STICKER OF THE DAY
This is entry #2398