A Traveler and his Cat exploring America.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Items of Note on the Interstate

 Grape Nuts are good wherever you are. Buy some today.

We left Red Rock Canyon State Park under promising skies after a midnight rain. I was torn between staying to get in one last hike or to go. To go seemed like the right choice for the further west we went the gloomier the skies became then finally...rain. There were pockets of rain all the way home some which did a good job cleaning the dead bugs away from the View. Along the way...

“Lap bands for weight loss”. There were a lot of these bill boards along the way, primarily around the Bakersfield area. I had never heard of them and wondered how wearing what seemed to me a girdle, could help you lose weight. It wasn’t till I was able to get online I discovered it involved surgery. Egads! I read no more. It must be a lucrative business in the central valley.

Another billboard promoted a girly joint where there were “100 Beautiful Girls and 3 Ugly Ones”. Now I have no desire in wasting time at a girly bar but this peaked my interest just for the fact of wanting to see what they considered ugly. “Oh God, I’m having a bad day. I started my period, my hair’s a mess and I don’t feel like putting on my make-up. You go ahead dear and I’ll be one of the ugly girls today.”

My friend drives a big rig truck back along the New England coast. He told me how to never drive alongside a big rig for any longer than to pass. “If a tire blows, it is like a stick of dynamite going off. I’ve seen small cars blown off the road with damaged side panels.” I've always heeded his advice and finally saw what he was talking about first hand. A big flatbed hauling bales of recycled cardboard was pulling away from a stop some 50 yards in front of us. A front inside trailer tire blew and it truly was like a stick of dynamite going off. We could feel the concussion all the way back to us. The white van next to the truck pulled off to the side and the car behind him pulled over too. Both drivers were shaken and the van had a few rubber skid marks along the side. Being it was an inside tire this shielded most of the potential damage. The flat bed crawled to a stop in the middle of the road with a small fire brewing underneath which was quickly extinguished. Seeing that really drove home the advice Glen gave me.

We stopped at the Anderson’s Pea Soup restaurant in Santa Nella. Their Travelers Special meal is a favorite – all the pea soup you can eat. I asked the waitress what the record was for one person. She said she didn’t witness it but has been told it stood at 17 bowls. “The guy never came back” whatever that was suppose to mean. She says there is one trucker who stops by regularly and has 5 bowls with crackers only. We can only manage 2 bowls and the effects of stay with you for a day or so. Perhaps that is why the 17 bowl man never returned.

We arrived at home eight hours and twenty minutes after our Grape Nuts breakfast. Total mileage in chasing wildflowers was 1657 miles. Now I am already thinking of the next venture out onto the road.


  1. Oh what a treat to find your blog too! In high school I would spend spring break every year chasing wildflowers in a school sponsored trip to either Anza Borrego or Death Valley and then to Joshua Tree. We'd stop at Anderson's Pea Soup and your post brings back happy high school memories.

    I'm also a fan of Grape Nuts however there is nothing (NOTHING) as tasty for breakfast as Grape Nuts, sliced strawberries, and honey (with milk). OK, now I'm hungry.

    (other favorite combinations are regular Cheerios and bananas, and Rice Chex with wild blackberries picked from the roadsides around Mendocino - definitely worth trying!)

  2. Thanks for the nice comment. I woke up this morning thinking of old bicycles. Thanks a lot! :)

  3. My vote for Grapenuts too. You should do a survey on cereals. I am also not too sure about the KFC. In a pinch I suppose.

  4. Let me make it clear, we're not fast food junkies but in a pinch they will fill the void. On the way home we drove through the L.A. area (which I always avoid) to visit my aunt in Glendale who will be 100 in June. After negotiating the nightmare of freeways we finally arrived close to her house running late on time. There stood a Del Taco and we got something quick to eat. Blah! The KFC ranked much better. Now this is something a survey needs to be done on - fast food joints, but I'll not be the test subject.

  5. Sure fast food surveys are a lot of fun. I think Taco Bell is better than Del Taco. I am not saying I love all junk food either. Rest assure at Taco Bell the food is HOT not cold when you get it. Yep in a pinch this is my vote.


I appreciate my commenters. Thank you. Sometimes you may ask a question which I am all too happy to answer. But if your comment comes in as Betsy-noreply-comment - I cannot reply back. Change you comment settings to include an e-mail address and then bloggers can reply.