Of course I love to travel. I’m genetically programmed to love to travel. They used to say about my grandmother that you could say the word ‘go’ to her and her response always was, “Wait ‘til I get my hat . . . “ and only as an afterthought she would add, “Oh, where are we going?” I think I’m probably cut from the same cloth.
A wonderful story about grandmother that took place when she was in her late 70’s: She was visiting friends in Longview, Texas. Rather than take the train back to California (a four-day prospect) she was offered a passage on the company airplane which would get her to her destination (Stockton, Ca) three days sooner. They neglected to tell her it was an Army surplus B29. (This was in 1947,) The first leg she rode in the back where it was outfitted with sling seats and no windows. The next leg she asked to ride in the Plexiglas bombardier turret. She loved it!
As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, my dad worked for CalTrans. He was the superintendent of a district and as such was required to check out all the road under his jurisdiction once or twice a month. Consequently, he drove a couple of hundred miles every day. So what was his favorite thing to do on his day off? Take a trip! And frequently, back in the day, that travel involved driving.
You couldn’t do it in this day and age, but back then (in the ‘40s and ‘50s) he loved to have guests ride along with him. I loved spending the day riding with him on his rounds. It was like riding with a travel guide. He’d say, “See that mountain over there? That’s such and such mountain. It’s where they mined the quartz crystal that was used in the Norden bomb sights in the WWII bombers.” Or, “See that line along the base of the mountains over there? That’s the aqueduct that brings water from Parker Dam to L.A.” Then he’d proceed to tell stories about the building of the aqueduct.
Even on a Saturday afternoon he’d say, “Let’s go see where that road goes.” Or,” I found a new way to get there.” Or ”this looks like it ought to go through. Let’s take it and see.”
A hundred years earlier he would have been leading the covered wagons across the plains, I’m sure!
So what is it about this travel thing that calls to some of us? (Notice, I admit that not all of us are afflicted with this crazy travel bug.)
For me, it’s joy . . . pure, unadulterated joy.
Oh, to be sure there are the hassles of packing and security lines and expensive fuel, etc. ad infinitum. But on the other hand, there are many factors in traveling that contribute to that joy.
The bottom line is that the prospect of going anywhere by any means is freighted with all kinds of possibilities. New scenery, new people to meet, time shared with old friends, both scenic and human.
Most of all, there’s the anticipation that around the next bend is something magical. My dad always said that if there were two tire tracks across the field, that meant there was something at the end to see. My mother always replied that she wished she had a nickel for every mile they’d had to back up because there was no place to turn around when they got to the end of the tracks. But it’s also true that sometimes there was something worth seeing… even magical.
Adrienne Jacoby is a 40-plus-year resident of Shasta County and native-born Californian. She was a teacher of vocal music in the Enterprise Schools for 27 years and has been retired for 11 years.
A musician all her life, she was married to the late Bill Jacoby with whom she formed a locally well -known musical group who prided themselves in playing for weddings, wakes, riots, bar mitzvas and super market openings. And, oh yes . . . she has two children, J’Anna and Jayson.
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