Under the clear skies of California…

Sunday, May 6th, 2007

The skies today came on the clearest they have ever been since we arrived here… but the planned ride to Sequoia’s King River road did not take place. A shadow has come upon me, it has been a struggle since yesterday morning, right after my cup of coffee… kidney pains! I felt like barely moving the speed of a 150 year old man all day, lots of pain and discomfort… I always think it could be worse, somehow the mind however cannot help the body the whole way.

Less than 48 hours have passed and again, taking small like child size steps! I realize how good my Karma is… think about it.

I am camping with a new friend, Ben, from Long Beach, California, he happens to be a Clinical Pharmacist for the past thirty years or more… he happens to have with him the prescribed dosage for seven days of antibiotics for kidney infection. This happened a few years back, it takes its course, I even against my better judgement took a little “tough” ride today as I could not stand it anymore to stay still…

Yesterday wiped me out, energy level below zero… Those are the times that many thoughts go through my mind as the logistics to go to the hospital are difficult. All my gear has to be left behind, and most important, Spirit! Spirit who by the way is back to his normal self… better me than him this time.

As the expression says… I laid low all day… but around 7pm, Ben and his friends, as he use to live here and has many, came by to pick me up for dinner.

Ben had cooked I have to say, the best meal I have had in a long long time! Chicken Mole… Chili Verde… an incredible Mango Salsa and of course refried beans. I never knew the man could cook so well… a humble man… eating… that I could do!

Spirit had some new friends, well, they never quite bonded… Lucy in Kingman, his true heartthrob has nothing to worry about. Regardless of how I felt, the hospitality of complete strangers just a few hours before uplifted and boosted my moral. A bedroom even was offered for as long as I would need it, if… things got worse and I required some medical care besides the antibiotics. Care that I received when this happened the first time a few years back… complete with some unpleasant procedures which I will skip their descriptions.

This morning was a slow one going, but it was going! I am always impatient for any medicine to do its job!… but I could feel a slight improvement. Back to the same house for lunch this time, their plan was to take short ride on 190 to the end where the road closure was still up.

Same road by the way that I rode from Kernville last week… we actually end up… yes, because I did go… 47 miles from where I was camping just a few days ago.

What I did not know was its degree of tightness on the curves! Again another road to be proud of and mark on anyone’s map! First going through the town of Springville with its Hotel toped by a Red Carriage. The road following a water pipeline feeding the town through its gravity from near 7000 feet. The flowers in bloom including the cactuses…

Stopping a bit past Cedar Slope for some conversation, more pictures of Spirit from customers lounging on decks, it was time to get to the downhill part of the return. The pain had set in… for the first time in a long time on a ride I kept looking at the GPS wondering how much longer we had! Such a shame to only enjoy the one way of that great road.

Better days are ahead, might still linger one more day here to heal, will have to pass on more Sequoia for the time being, I might have a chance to enter Yosemite as I am also planning to attend a riders gathering next weekend, Gathering where I will be cooking on Friday night and planning to be there to unwind maybe as early as Wednesday.

Such incidents are harder to handle when living on the road, I am just very lucky to again, at the right time and the right place be surrounded by some great people, people ready to open their home to us, drive me wherever I need to go… what can one say?… They are around and I am so thankful to that fact.

You might be wondering, going back to Saturday, what ever happened to my offered cup of coffee by another Armenian fellow? Maybe my Karma with coffee is not so good!!!

As we arrived that day in Fresno, meeting Tom, another rider… Joey, who had invited me, came up from his tennis game as we met in the Park, to let me know… with I must say quite a short “manner”… that it will be just a cup of coffee… Had “I” asked for anything?… And a few minutes later… to let Tom know… with maybe not enough forwardness to let me know personally… that there will “not” be any coffee today… and no… it is not the coffee! It is part of the fact to be looking forward to meeting someone from a country where my roots came from… maybe some of his own friends too… as we indeed “were invited”, riding 180 miles round trip… just to be told that ‘today was too busy”… Tennis anyone??? Tom and his wife were very kind to take me out to lunch… we had a great time, some great conversations and the food was great!

Just thought that you might have been wondering!!!… Such is life you know… not all seeds germinate and grow to be beautiful trees… even when the roots are tangled with your own…

Till the next time… you be well…

Ara & Spirit

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                                                                                                                           Ara Gureghian                                                                                            853 Vanderbilt Beach Road #245 Naples Fl 34108                                                                                           

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One Response to “Under the clear skies of California…”

  1. Tom&Wyatt Says:

    Ara; Sorry to hear that your coffee date went aray, just goes to show that when you least expect it, a jerkoff will pop up. what did he think you wanted? his first born??? Sounds like you met just who you needed to meet, in Ben. As a former Hospital Corpsman, I know theat kidney pain is nothing to smile about. And being on the road at the time just makes it all that much more worse. Wyatt and I are in Nevada at the moment, at Wendover, by the Utah line. He is still not to happy at the thought of riding in the sidecar. He has a thing about noises, until he gets used to them. We have been just stopping along the way at anywhere that seems interesting, we’ll be heading south, I think.
    I have to be back in 2 weeks, my cat sitter has to leave by then, I hope you are still in the neighborhood, and are feeling better. Maybe we can get together then,
    Until then, be well, and give a wof to spirit from us.

    Tom&Wyatt

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