Barstow, CA – evening

Back in the desert again.  It was a chilly 110 in Barstow today, and the locals are breaking out the wool and flannel as nighttime temperatures are expected to plummet into the high 80’s.  Honestly, I have no idea how people live here, much less seem to be able to look at it as being “normal.”  I do notice more casual tequila consumption than I’m used to; perhaps that’s the explanation.  I’ve had tequila nights where twenty-foot piranha bats seemed perfectly normal to me…

First, let’s get the bitching and moaning out of the way.  If you’re tired of this kind of stuff, just jump to the next paragraph.  Even though I did get here alive, Roberta Verona is still making those squealing sounds, which is no big surprise ( I can’t remember _ever_ having an automotive issue disappear all on its own), but as I came into Barstow, she was having trouble taking gas (what I would call “missing”), losing power, and backfiring, parfticularly on uphills, which is an all-new symptom.  But I get here, get set up, and decide to unhook the Tracker and it’s brand-new, state-of-the-art braking system and go have some dinner.  As soon as I turn the thing on, the big red CHECK ENGINE light comes on.  AAAAHAHHHHAHAHAH!  Why do mechanical things go all haywire around me?  I’ve actually heard of people who have very powerful electro-magnetic fields and can cause eletronics around them to fail, but I have no idea how I might be causing machinery to fall apart.  The sucky thing is that my repair bills have now gotten to the point where I have to take my bankroll in account while planning.  The odyssey may be coming to a quicker end than I’d originally hoped…

On the positive side of things, I just had one killer patty melt.  When you’re in the mom ‘n’ pop truck stop restaurant, go for the patty melt.  New heights of grease.  It’s difficult to type, my fingers keep slipping onto the wrong keys.

Yes, I have the laptop on the table here in the truck stop.  Some people read magazines while waiting for patty melts, I write updates.

Okay, I was in positive territory… Las Vegas should be less than three hours away, so I should be there before noon tomorrow.  I might be able to call a Geo place to see how worrisome this CHECK ENGINE message really is.  The odometer just rolled, so it might just be a mileage indication.  Unlike San Diego, I should have some free time in Vegas.  Most of the day Thursday and Friday will be free (Friday’s festivities are all reception type issues in the evening), and I haven’t decided when I’m leaving, Monday or Tuesday.  I need to be in Reno the 26th… Ooops, that’s 2am the 26th, better make that the 25th.  So apparently I _will_ be leaving on Monday…  If Roberta feels okay all the way in, I think I’ll set up the recording equipment when I get to Vegas.  If she doesn’t, I’ll probably check into it.  Sigh.

Hey, where’d my positive stuff go?  Actually, it’s sorts hard right now.  I’m trying to drive early in the morning while it’s cool, and that’s screwing up my sleep schedule even further.  I haven’t even recovered from San Diego yet.  So I’m _really_ tired, and I’ve got a headache from the heat.  I keep trying to drink a lot of water, and that’s making my feel real heavy.  The greasy patty melt was great tasting, but isn’t exactly helping in the feeling-like-a-lard-ass department…

Okay, I’m running a low-level depression, so I’m going to stop writing now.  Hopefully, I’ll sleep right tonight, roll into Vegas on time and with highly-performing vehicles, and get several song masters down.  Then I can write a more positive update.  Too bad that after so long without an update, when I get a chance to write I feel crappy.

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