Justin: In the Feast of Being Able to. Amen.

Final Vacation Post

I returned Wednesday, but haven’t taken the time to write about the last two days in Eureka. At least not here.

Tuesday was great. Breakfast, then I wrote a little, then walked back to the shops since there were many I had not seen. Eureka is probably best suited for two target audiences: Artists and groups of women. 75% of the shops are giggledy trinket frillies and bead ring things. And hats.

I still enjoyed my brief hours on Spring Street, and I bought a few items. Thankfully the two antique store type places didn’t have any historical stuff I was interested in, so I didn’t do something stoopid.

“Dude, what is that on your porch?”
“You like it?”
“That’s an antique wrought iron pedal-driven corn grinder in the approximate likeness of Lou Armistead.”
“Life size?”

Ok, I just made that up, but honestly… that would ROCK. Which I guess is my point. Glad the content was weak. There were a couple of gourmet coffee places. One that served house-made ice cream. I had strawberry shortcake and it was good. But I sorta viewed it like I do Golden Corral: If your mama didn’t cook for you as a child, you probably would love it. I’d put a fold-out table full of church folks’ home made ice cream tubs up against their “gourmet” ice cream any day.

I found the stopper to the tub Tuesday and took a nice tub bath. As I was sitting there reading a Stephen Hunter novel, trading texts with my little brother and hoping not to drop my iphone into the water, it occurred to me that I sorta miss the clawfoot mornings of my year in the Tilles house. You just don’t hurry a tub bath, that’s a fact.

Wednesday I had one last awesome breakfast, said goodbye to the kitty, loaded up the truck and then walked back downtown for final purchases in the stores and then lunch with Korey and Jacob at the New Delhi.

As it turns out there was more I hadn’t seen, but I didn’t really care to at that point. I headed back up to the highway where the newer motels are and went back to see the man I visited with about coffee and tourism and the U.S. Government stimulus package on Sunday afternoon when I arrived

Dennis offered the kind of practical wisdom that will never be present on the chamber floor.

“Barak Obama is spending that money all wrong. What he should have done is give 1 million dollars to every U.S. citizen 65 or older, with one stipulation: they have to spend it. Doesn’t matter what on, but they can’t bank it. You talk about infusing the economy. There’d be so much commerce taking place over night, and here’s the deal: that would cost less money than the way we’re doing it.”

I was speechless.

Which reminds me of the really nice scary man with the chicken-fried brain I met Tuesday. I was seated, talking to a drummer I’d met the day before when I saw his Zildian t-shirt. The permanently stoned hippie, about 55 or 60, came in smiling, sat at an adjacent table and with a grand gesture of royal demeanor, immediately addressed us in pure jibberish.

I smiled back. “Indeed!”

“I know, brother. But isn’t that right?” he said.

“You can say that again,” I replied. But he didn’t. I couldn’t place his face but he looked like someone who could have been famous forty years ago. He looked like an original member of a 70’s rock band, grown old.

The waitress approached and was detained. Deep Fried Man (DFM) had an artist’s tablet which he used as a quote book for anyone and everyone he met to write something in. Anything. About every fifth or sixth entry was in his writing, but there were dozens, maybe hundreds of participants he had gotten quotes from. After the waitress finally gave in and wrote a profanity (which was apparently an honest quote she’s known for), I asked for the pad.

I read them all and while he was giving me advice about how to write brilliant things, I wrote a piece of wisdom handed down by Douglas men for generations.

“It takes a mighty big horse to weigh a ton.”

He was mesmerized. He read it over and over aloud for more than two minutes, then finally said, “Wow, that is deep. And I love your star in front of it, that is well done, man.”

Suddenly Led Zeplin came on the speakers. He stood and began dancing a dance that can be accurately described as being like Daniel-son’s hand motions while practicing Karate on the beach, only with no lower body motion whatsoever. His hands were fluid, his hands were adders, his hands were gators, his hands were duck bills quacking for an end to fossil fuels and peace at Yasgur’s farm. His hands really needed sock puppets.

He aimed this dance at some people at the other nearest table. I watched. He nodded at them knowingly, as if to say, “uh-hu, that’s right, that’s what I thought.” The adders danced and swayed. The people left.

I turned back around and my new buddy’s seat was now occupied by the girlfriend I’d seen him resuscitating on the day before. He’d stepped away for something.

“This salsa was like mama’s,” I said a little too loudly, then I got up, bowed to the two ladies, patted chicken fried dancer, and said bye to the drummer.

I keep getting asked how much writing I got done. Not quite as much as I planned, but I wrote, I made some progress, and that felt good.

Most importantly, I got away for a while.

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