Manage last minute crises, with normal ineptitude, so leave SF later than expected. Traffic backed up to Berkeley’s Ashby Avenue benefits as those seemingly wasteful highway TV screens “document” that an accident is being cleared, and from where. (So tax money is NOT always wasted: who knew?)
A sunny day does little to help make more attractive dull dun hillsides along I-80. (Rodeo & Martinez offer a slight change: BLACKENED hillsides protect refinery gas tanks). WOW!
In Sacramento, a fast check-in @ AYH’s delightful old mansion. Am warned of a nationwide convocation of high school students, but a quick listen suggests some insightful conversations & some amazing musical talents. Yeah, they’re loud: but it’s more exciting than Smartphone silence.
Manage to confuse myself (& my GPS) in Citrus Heights searching for an Elephant Bar. (Suggests some Liberal wordplay for changing Congress’s composition).
Finally, granddaughter Samantha connection occurs & dinner delights as she recounts her sometimes awkward efforts to put together a viable life while still carrying historical loads of family dysfunctionality. Am reminded, upon leaving, how she has always, even in desperately hard times, managed to keep an attitude & faith that things will get better.
Back at the hostel, youngsters are gone, downtown Sacto traffic is quiet, and thus, peace & quiet reign supreme.
Alas, solitude never lasts long enough, and an older woman turns TV on to hear two international bully boys play “King of the (Nuclear) Mountain”.
Turns out Joan is a Photography teacher wending her way from Yuba City to Bay Area’s Pittsburg high school. She posits that technology makes teaching more difficult, as students are now less inclined toward anything requiring a long attention span (MY memories make “It was ever thus” a non-point). Her enthusiasm for a past when she could introduce young people into dark room joy (No, not THOSE joys!) makes understandable her heavy heart.