01 May 2010

the trip home part one: HWY 5, Trout vs. Yuba City & the Chinese Cowboy at dinner

I know this blog is getting a little disjointed but please bare with me (...hehehe... 'bare') When I get home and get rested I will do the BIG SAN DIEGO/ARTWALK entry which will probably need to involve chapters. Be patient.


I was up and out of Casa del Col. J surprisingly early. (will leave the goodbyes and all the other sappy stuff for the aforementioned BIG SAN DIEGO/ARTWALK entry)
I had wanted to be out early but it is always a surprise to me when I actually am. After an oil change and a breakfast burrito I was on my way out of town on HWY 5.

Two words for HWY 5: BO RING. I still have to write my treatise on driving in SoCal, again... patience.

where was I? Oh yes! driving in a straight frikken line with thousands of other cars, that's where I was. I opted not to go through the no-mans-land route up the 395 as ARTWALK wasn't lucrative enough to warrant such wayward adventure. Couldn't be justified. I have to get home, get a haircut and get a real job.

So, up the 5 it was. There really is nothing more to say about it. There are too many people driving too many cars. Oh, and trucks. Lets not forget all the massively and unnecessarily huge pick-ups that are driving around with apparently nothing to 'pick up'. (The handbasket in which we're traveling has the words 'heavy duty' written in big, carnivorous letters on it) ... but I digress again...

There was one little side track I was going to allow myself. At some point during the planning, re-planning, re-re-planning, updating and re-updating of the planning I thought 'Yuba City' would be a good stop. Simply for it's name. Yuba City. So, on my way up the 5 I realized that it wasn't a huge sidetrack to scoot up the 99 (he shoots he scores!) & visit the city of yuba. I missed the turnoff but was able to take the next one and was thrilled by the change in scenery. It was a spectacular drive. Sun was setting. Birds were chirping. It was great. (There may be a video to follow, we'll have to see about uploading it later. but here's a tree I took just as it was getting too dark)

Then I hit Yuba City. Now, I think I may have really liked Yuba City if I wasn't frazzled to the point of rage by the time I got there. All I wanted was a dirtbag motel with wireless. Cheap-cheap. So I started driving around Yuba City. Circles and u-turns and... 'now where the hell am I?'s...

I'm really no good when I get into a town late and hungry. I'm occasionally a monster. I was a monster to Yuba City. I cussed it a blue streak like nobody's business. I'm sorry Yuba City.
At one point I had gone to a chain motel joint and wasn't fond of the price so I went to look for another and, eventually thought I might as well settle for it... then I couldn't find it again. I drove about an eight of a tank of gas in that town looking for it. I was a monster. So the decision was made: whatever I find first the motel or HWY 99 out of town. I found the highway first. I ended up in Chico. (didn't see 'the man' but was just too tired to look)

Ended the night at a Motel 6 and a meal at Denny's.


I asked the receptionist at the motel if there was anything in the area at that time that might have something even mildly healthy to eat. She said Denny's next door was the only thing around and it had salads.
I went there.
I ordered the asian chicken salad.
It was deep fried chicken strips in sweet chili sauce on a heap of iceberg lettuce with some samplings of red cabbage in it. surrounded, sort of like a crown, with 8 slices of cucumber. I thought that an asian salad coming with garlic bread was weird, but then the issue of salad dressing came up. I was seated at the counter and when she brought me my asian chicken salad she said 'oh! there's supposed to be dressing.' she turned to the kitchen and told the obviously new cook that it came with dressing. She said it was 'that ranch dressing'.
I said, 'um... excuse me?'
'are there any other dressings?'
'well it comes with the ranch.'
'um... ok. but do you have any others?'
'well, there's thousand islands and italian... but they don't go with it.'
'and ranch does?'
'Oh, don't worry' she said 'it's asian ranch.'

I turned to the imaginary person next to me and mouthed 'asian ranch?' The imaginary person next to me turned into a small asian man wearing a large cowboy hat. He tipped his hat and nodded with a hearty, cowboy assurance.

'Ok.' I said 'Bring it.'

The asian ranch is ranch with sweet chili sauce in it.

follow the bouncing ball, kids:


I then ended up wrestling with the internet connection and falling asleep to a really bad Kiefer Sutherland movie where he was mad at mirrors.

sleep was good.

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