Sunday, November 04, 2007
I made my first return trip to Sacramento last week since relocating to Oregon. The main purpose was to photograph the dress rehearsal by the Sacramento Ballet. This year begins Ron Cunningham's 20th year as Artistic Director and he choreographed "A Woman's Journey: The Tamsen Donner Story" for the season opening. The Ballet uses poems by Ruth Whitman she gleaned from Tamsen Donner's diary during the disastrous Donner Party journey to California. The ballet recounts the journey and it's fateful end in the Sierra. Ilana Goldman was amazing as she danced the role of Tamsen Donner.
My friends Renée Byer and Paul Kitagaki lent me their guest bed and it was a little strange sleeping in a town where I used to live. Paul and I rode up the American River bike trail on a balmy afternoon. We sat on a bench and watched a Red-tailed hawk sit at the edge of the trail totally unfazed by cyclists whirring by. On another day Randy Pench rode with me up the trail again. It never gets boring.
There isn't too much I miss about Sacramento, certainly not the traffic, city noise, congestion. I definitely miss my few close friends, Paul, Renée, Randy and former neighbor and cycling partner Brian Taugher and of course my daughter. The bike trail can't be matched anywhere. While cycling in my new area is challenging and amazingly scenic it doesn't have the comfort of no vehicle traffic and constant smooth pavement.
Allison and I had a dad-daughter date night with dinner at a great Thai restaurant and then the opening night performance at the ballet. She had just been to Sisters for a visit the previous weekend after attending her grandfather's 80th birthday party/family reunion in Portland. Still I wish I could have had more time with her.
I made the absolutely bucolic drive from Sacramento to Geyserville on CA 128 through the hills around Lake Berryessa and then through the Napa and Alexander valleys to Geyserville to visit my friends of 34 years, Ed and Ann Howard. I stayed the night and then went to Geyserville the next morning with Ed to a pancake breakfast sponsored by the volunteer fire department. There was a fall festival complete with an antique/rare car show. Ed drove his 1956 Austin Healy down to the show.
I left Geyserville and made the 8-hour trip home, i-pod constantly pumping out the tunes. It's good to be home.