This past weekend was a bit of a vacation for me. I had Friday off, and Monday also, which gave me a spectacular 4-day weekend. So, I decided the most productive use of this mini-vacation would be to get out of town, and visit some of my favorite drinking spots in
. For those who
have never experienced Sacramento
through the bottom of a bucket glass, you are missing out. There is a whole
booze culture up there. Remember, the place has been around since the gold rush
and was founded on saloons and brothels. Plus, it’s the state capital and I
found that most capital cities are great drinking destinations. Don’t know why,
it just seems to be so. Sacramento
But the real story here is not a warm-hearted tale of a personal m
On Wednesday, I logged on to Amtrak’s website and purchased round trip tickets between
I went back to the Amtrak station, and proceeded to wait on the bench for my train, 713. I was informed the 713 would be about 20 minutes late by a courteous Amtrak employee. Fuck it. I didn’t mind the wait. After all, I was on vacation.
Within five minutes, my train came in. I proceeded to ask the same Amtrak guy what the story was with this train. Again, he stressed – in no uncertain terms - that MY train was to be 20 minutes late. The gentleman informed me that THIS train was bound for
Sure enough, 20 minutes later came a train, oddly from the north. The Amtrak employee scurried out from his office and let me know that my train had arrived. I boarded, sat down, and the train departed.
“JESUS H. CHRIST, MARY AND JOSEPH HANGING OFF A CROSS, GOD DAMNED SHIT. MOTHERFUCKER!” was the only thing I could think of to say at that point as the train slowly began to roll south.
The conductor came by to collect my ticket, and smirked at me a bit as I shamefully turned it over to him.
The next 20 minutes were stretched out infinitely. I knew the train I was supposed to be on was the last northbound train in the Central Valley, but
When I finally arrived in
A freight train passed the station before I reached the counter, and for a brief moment, I considered jumping on it like a depression-era hobo.
I asked him about other transportation alternatives. I was shit out of luck. Where there any cabs? Nope. Busses? Nope. Thinking about hitching or walking, I finally asked how far it was from
"78 Miles" He replied.
Ahhh fuck it! I gave up. I decided to stay in
I set out on foot and discovered an amazing little town. I saw the Fox Theatre, and saw Willie Nelson is playing there next month. I saw a permanent outdoor carousel and a real town square. The place reminded me of the town in Back to the Future.
I checked into a Comfort Suites, showered, and decided to make the most of my stay.
Heading out, I stopped at the front desk and asked if there were any decent bars within walking distance. I was directed to Simon's.
It turned out to be a place I never would have expected in small town
By 10:00 I was shit-faced and ready for a change of scenery. So I walked down the street and ended up at a cool bar called The Bastille. Great place with a great bartender and fun regulars. I ended up playing dice with a guy that couldn't win a roll and walked away with about twenty extra dollars.
On my way back to the Comfort Suites, I found another little bar and decided to have a few more "nightcaps." At this point, I can't remember the name of the place or what I drank, or how many I had. As a matter of fact, I can't even remember if I even paid for my drinks. I do, however, remember walking the half block between the bar and the hotel, because a local cop pulled up to me and started asking questions. Apparently, I was so drunk, that anyone driving by would say "that guy is so drunk!"
I explained to the cop that I was not planning to drive and that I was a visitor staying in the Comfort Suites and dug around in my pocket until I was able to find my room key. Then, the strangest thing happened. The cop walked me to my room, opened the door for me, and told me to enjoy my stay in
I know I got a little long winded on this one. Thanks for hanging in there if you have gotten this far. I guess the whole point of the story is this: Make do with what you have. I turned a miserable night into a whole mess of fun by realizing my glass was half full. I was on vacation after all. And, if you ever plan on getting super-loaded in a small town. Choose