I’m a local. . . Really!

31 Dec

I had to work over Memorial Day weekend.  Hearing my coworkers being so talkative about their plans and seeing all the RVs and boats driving by my work made me super-jealous too.  I wanted to have a Bar-B-Q, have a picnic, go to the lake, or camp!  But nooooo, I was stuck inside.  Like always, I was missing a holiday for work—I was not happy about it either.

When friends invited me to Lake Lahontan , I was ecstatic—even though I hadn’t studied in 4 days.   I haven’t been to the lake in at least 10 years—it was time, right?!  I put on my cutest beach-ware, swim shoes, and grabbed a towel and was on my way by 12:35 pm (note the time).

Before I left, I pulled up an online map and saw you could get to it by Highway 50 or 95, and it only took 20 minutes.  The map made it look like I would be heading North-East to get to beach 6.  Note:  I should not soon become a cartographer.  This comes into play later.  I got to the stoplight in Stage Coach (the end of recognizable territory), and looked at the signs.  If I went straight (East), I would be on Highway 50.  Left (North) was Highway 50 (again?) and Highway 95.  That’s confusing. . .  I decided to go left, since you can get to the lake by either road, I figured taking the direction of BOTH roads was my best bet.  Why I didn’t know the topography of the land after living there for 16 years, I could not tell you. . .

When I turned, I was immediately in line for a one way, truck-guided construction site.  Soon, a whole line of cars followed me.  I waited a half hour and it was my side’s turn.  It was then I realized I was going the wrong way!  I would have to get through construction then turn around and wait for another half hour!  No, I was volubly cursing!  I kept driving the wrong way and ended up in Fernley at 1:30 pm.  I guess Fernley has to get to the lake somehow too, so I just kept going.  That, and I didn’t want to deal with the school traffic AND construction.

When I saw a sign showing Highway 50 that went East, I took it.  Who, when they were surveying the land and highways, thought it would be the greatest idea to have several Highway 50 going in many directions???  I drove and drove, then got to a round-about.  It said Fallon was North or Old Farm Road was South.  Even though the road was sketchy and I didn’t know where it was headed, it seemed to be going in the direction I needed so I took it.  I drove and drove and drove on this mysterious, winding road, not seeing anything familiar.  I was just starting to think I would have to bite the bullet and turn around, when there was a junction.  It was Highway 50!  Jeeze, how many directions does Highway 50 go?!  Again with the person who charted the roads!  I took it South, then realized it was Alt. Highway 50, whatever that means.  So again, I was uncertain where I was going.  Then, to my relief, I saw a sign for Carson City-yay!  I’ve never been so happy to see that. . .  I was back on the original Highway 50 that goes by my house.  Suddenly, there was a Lahontan  sign and I turned to it—yay I had made it after all!

Next up:  Now I remember!  Story of Lahontan’s beach.

I called my friends, and they said they were on beach 6.  I drove to the 6 stick and there was a bathroom, I didn’t see my friend’s car though. . .  Hmmm.  So I drove a little further down a dirt road that winded around.  As soon as the road turned the corner, I remembered. . .
Ahhhh-you can’t drive too far down the beach at Lahontan , because the sand is very soft, and you will get stuck.  I lamented my decision to drive down the hill pretty shortly after doing it.  I realized it too late–the dirt road was narrow and there was no way to turn around.  The momentum of the hill carried me down, but I reached deep sand and my car got stuck at the bottom.
How embarrassing—especially since I know better.  I had to time for elegy as I had to get out of the car and try to get un-stuck.  We used to make fun of the stupid Californians for getting doing that.  I got out and dug my car out with a Starbucks cup.  My car could move, but I certainly couldn’t reverse up a steep, curving hill.  I attempted to get to a well-worn path a little bit ahead.  With some effort, my car amazingly made it to the road and traveled more than the length of a football field through the soft sand!
Suddenly the tire tracks in the sand went from straight, to all directions!  My car stopped.  I tried all the tricks, but I was stuck—bad.  I was also too far from the first hill, but had to cross a lot of thick, soft, sand to get to the next hill.  Not good.  A dirge for the buried tires an through my head.
I dug, and dug, but it was getting hot.  The sun was beating down on me, and the sand and my car were really hot.  I got wet in the lake then tried again.  It was no use—the car wouldn’t budge.  Finally, I dropped my pride and called my friends, telling them how I got lost, and now I was stuck on the beach.  She said they would pick me up and not to worry because her dad could tow me out.
I doubted anyone could get my car out, but that’s the next segment of the story.

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