In all my years of driving, I try to take the roads less traveled, unless I have to get there reasonably fast. My one exception – where beautiful scenery and Interstates converged – was Interstate 70 when I was driving through the San Rafael Reef at sunset a couple of years ago. It was so breathtaking that I had to pull off to a rest stop and take this picture:
I-70 going though the San Rafael Reef at dusk
History has always fascinated me because how we are today is because how we were. Economic forces, which in large measure affected political measures, and add a pinch of personalities to the mix.
So how did the Comstock Lode affect us today?
Before we proceed, I found an excellent overview of Virginia City today – both an aerial view and surface view.
During it’s heyday, there were about 25,000 people living here. Today, as of 2010, there’s 855. Before our guide, Joe Curtis, had to leave to attend to the fire threatening Virginia City, he took us for a walk down the C Street, which is the main street. Imagine getting off the train, the Virginia and Truckee, and seeing a sky almost black from the smoke of the mills, running 24 hours a day. While the city was among the dirtiest, it was the richest and alive 24 hours a day.
I can’t readily find the number of saloons and other venues of entertainment in that era, suffice it to say there were many.
I have been lucky during my life in that I have been able to travel extensively. Then too, I took advantage of every opportunity. Even getting fired. One thing that travel has given me is to expand my world view. You can get a different perspective on things.
There are a few series I have come across, such as Babylon 5, Battlestar Gallactica (the remake, of course), Twilight Zone (just to name a few) that are worth watching again. All had in my opinion excellent acting and screenwriting. In the case of the Twilight Zone, it is fun to look at some of these young actors, such as William Shatner, Jack Klugman, and Robert Redford and realize how many of them would go on to bigger things.
Filed under History, Travel
An old section of Hwy 40 from Soda Springs to Truckee – maybe 15-20 miles – was kept open to show drivers this beautiful view of Donner Lake. In 1846 things were a lot more dire.
Some years ago, I worked for Cessna Aircraft in Wichita KS.
I mention Kansas because when I was there, for some reason, outsiders always confused it with Wichita Falls, TX.
On a lot of levels it was very different from San Diego, where I left after studying computer programming * for almost a year. For one, after coming home to work and ready for a swim on a hot, muggy afternoon, I discovered the pool to be …..empty of water. Because they always drained the pool on September 1st.
When I was stationed in Germany, I took every bit of spare time – and leave – that I could, to see both neighboring sights and other countries. While on the trains, I liked to talk to the Germans, ask them about World War II.
There were 2 such conversations I remember distinctly to this day after 46 years. One was a (then) middle aged woman. We had a pleasant enough conversation until I got to the War.
What did you do?