Thursday, July 24, 2008

...and more

We found Virginia City with no problems. The road up to the town has 63 or 64 (the number is debated) hairpin turns on the way up and around the mountain. It’s a 2 lane road with no guardrails and no shoulder; and I have issues with edges, so at least part of the drive up I tried very hard to concentrate on the double yellow line in the middle of the road. The scenery was spectacular. I wish I could have enjoyed it more.

We found our way to the V&T depot so we know where to go tomorrow, and then spent some time wandering around Virginia City itself. The whole town is one of those ‘tourist trap’ communities, where the whole main street is made up of shops selling T shirts & collectibles, so we didn’t stay terribly long.

Driving back down was a little less hair raising then the trip up. Not that the road was less curvy, just that there were fewer of them. Again, no guard rails. I think that the floor on the passenger side will have permanent footprints in the floor from my attempts to apply the brakes.

We found the home of our hosts, Michael and Jacki in Carson City, and visited with them for a while. They gave us some choices for food, so we picked a pizza place for dinner. The room we’ll sleep in is about a 9X12 with a double sized futon for a bed. But since it only costs $15 and includes breakfast, it’ll do fine.

Tomorrow morning after breakfast, we plan to go to the Nevada State Railroad museum. It houses the cars of the V&T railroad that are not used for the excursions. There is also a trolley that runs excursions, so we’ll find out the schedule, and may ride it also. The V&T is only running one trip tomorrow. Their regular schedule does not start until Memorial Day WE, but a phone call verified that they’d be operating this Saturday, so we slowed down a bit to take advantage of the operating day.

Saturday May 3, Day 5

For breakfast, Michael made French Toast and bacon. After leaving their home we went to the museum and rode their trolley. It only runs around their museum property, so by the third circuit, it was pretty boring. Then drove up to the V&T in time to wander around a bit, before the train came out. The ride was nice, the scenery lovely, but the track noise was so loud we could barely here the narrator as he pointed out the sites along the way. I took quite a few pictures.

After the V&T ride, we drove back down the mountain and followed rte 50 down the east side of Lake Tahoe. We found a State Park, (not yet open for the season) and parked along the road – with lots of others with the same idea – and walked in to the picnic area to eat our lunch.

When we got to the CA border, we had to stop for an agriculture inspection. I declared the Gala apples purchased at a grocery store, and the orange picked up at a motel a couple of days before. The warden apologetically took my orange because it had no sticker on it, and let us keep the apples, which did. I now have an official State of CA agricultural confiscation certificate for the orange.

After that we drove the 100 or so miles to Carmichael, and arrived at Jeff and Tia’s at about 4:30 in the afternoon. Jamie and Zoey were there, so we got to meet the baby right away. She scoots herself around, and pulls herself up in the stairs now. Her legs are still pretty wobbly, but she’s pretty determined. She can get up the two stairs from the living room to the kitchen level.

Jeff made dinner, and we sat around and talked until nearly midnight before he guided us to our hotel.

Sunday May 4, Day 6

Tia wanted to take us to Old Fair Oaks to a festival there, so we went there about 11:30 or so. We walked through the antique car exhibits, and then walked about a half mile downhill to the river. The weather has been phenomenally good, so walking was nice! Walking back up the hill, however, was not quite as easy, and it had gotten warmer! Back at the top, Jeff & Vince went to get us something to drink, and Tia and I waited in the shade. When they got back, as we were talking, suddenly Jeff walked over to a young woman, and hugged her. It was my cousin Nan’s daughter Denise. I have not seen her since Jeff was 5 and Karl 3. She was 1 ½ at the time. So we chatted a bit, and then she and her boyfriend and his dad (with his antique car) had to leave.

Back to Jeff’s for dinner, and on to the motel.

Monday May 5, Day 7

Today we went to Sacramento with Jeff to visit Sutter’s Fort. Unfortunately the volunteers that I ‘know’ thru the Sewing Academy were not there as they only can work on weekends; but we had a really nice time. The fort is a State Historic location, so Park Rangers and paid employees are there. We chatted with several of them, and thoroughly enjoyed the day. I took pictures of a couple of period rope beds so Vince can attempt to make more historically correct head and foot boards.Sutters Fort rope bed

Sutters Fort rope bedAfter leaving the fort, we had lunch downtown, and then back to the house. Tomorrow we leave for Yosemite. It’ll give Tia a break.

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