I am up in Castaic, California, my third home north of Los Angeles. Yesterday we had a chilly rain, snow over the Grapevine Pass, no internet service, no credit card service, no automated tellers, and very limited cellphone access. The day was strange, gloomy, and lonely as hell with nothing to do but watch movies and sit in the cafe. Mike's Diner gave me the 'power' over the remote control, and because I wasn't wearing my reading glasses, I managed to accidentally shut the television completely down. Everyone looked over at me like I was the devil. Finally, a really smart waitress was able to restart programming while I sat squirming with embarrassment in my hot little chair--lucky for me!
Starbuck's is still experiencing some wifi connection issues, so I am blogging from McDonald's today. A family is visiting Castaic from Squaw Valley. They have had seven feet of snow in the last week. The wife is telling me they would like to go home, but their community is overrun with tourists out for a day on the lovely slopes. Every run is open 100 percent, and the temperature is a mild 22 degrees. I bet it's perfect!
Last night the Grapevine was so treacherous that the California Highway Patrol escorted traffic across the pass in groups. I can only imagine the miserable wait times while vehicles crept down the steep mountainside. This morning a lovely coating of snow covered the green foothills, but now the hot sun is shining, and the lower elevation snow is all melted away.
Tomorrow I start up my truck and leave Castaic behind. I will miss the nice people, the palms and flowers, and Mike's Diner. I hope I am going home to see my family.