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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Still More "Peak Experience"

Number One Niece, knowing that I like to get into hot water, took me to a place, close to Atascadero, called Sulfur Pond. The bouquet of sulfur was scarcely notable. Upon arrival I promptly noted, come would say complained about, the loudly amplified music. My niece promptly took me home, fed me, and put me to bed. I did find time to have the owner turn down the amplification and have him tell me some interesting things about the geology and hydrology of his spa.

I feel the spa would be worth another visit. The pond is stocked with catchable, cookable, eatable fish. The waters of the adjoining pool have some fame for curing or alleviating certain skin problems. The facilities are modest, but there is place to change and there is shade. It was one of those places that you can bring a chest of cold beer to drink without hassle, within reasonable limits.

There is a web site for Sulfur Pond, but I haven't located it yet. If you know a web-site that seems right, please put it in "Comments."

Being a Sulfur Pond reminded me of another place I had gotten into hot water. In my imagination it was one of those place built before the war with a kind of frontier gentry in mind.

The place I was reminded of was California Hot Springs. I Knew it was in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada somewhere south of Yosemite. My niece pointed me toward the Central Valley of California and I followed her directions. The Central Valley, for those who don't know it, is one of those great, fantastically fertile and productive agricultural areas sometimes referred to as bread-baskets of the world. The valley runs north and south(and visa versa). It is bordered on its east by the Sierra and on its west by The Coastal Range. Much of it was quite beautiful, but now its air has been fouled.

My niece's directions got me to the valley, but there, I promptly got lost. I was lost in the middle of the valley for many hours and many miles. The air was so foul that I could see neither the Sierra Nevada nor the Coastal Range nor locate the sun very well.

I'm usually pretty good at getting unlost, but I have limitations which have improved little with age. For example, for some of my early years I confused New York with California (and visa versa).
Perhaps my confusion was due to their both being similarly illustrious and both being contingent to ocean.

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