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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Rock Wrangling in the Gold Country


That is the sound of two fat ladies, preparing for an auto trip.

My buddy Barbara decided to come for a long visit in order to escape house projects at her home. On day two of her visit, I bundled her into the Honda and we headed southeast through the California historic gold rush lands. I LOVE the drive and it changed since my last visit to the area. There are now 'Historic' bypasses that veer off the main route, that wind though historic houses in quaint, old-timie neighborhoods.

A ruin that reminded me of Ireland's roadside castle ruins

The real purpose of the drive was not sight-seeing, it was THEFT! Yes. I admit. I'm a thief. And just below is a photo of my booty - Calaveras County Marble!

Ill Gotten Gain, or Free Landscaping?

There is a HUMONGOUS vein of marble rock that pops out of the ground in Calaveras County. Not the fanciest marble rock on the planet, but it is nice, whitish grey with streaks of darker gray, and heck, it looks great in my garden. We drove down side streets looking for outcroppings of the rock.

We found one likely spot, and lady-like Auntie Barbara strolled up the incline and began lobbing great chunks of rock down to the road. She has the strength of 37 grizzly bears (piss her off and the grizzly number rises exponentially).

Barbara washing her delicate hands after lobbing boulders downhill.

We stopped briefly for a nice lunch at a Mexican restaurant in Columbia State Park.

Columbia State Park: Photo by Robert Holmes / Cal Tours

On our drive back to Fair Oaks we detoured to an old restored cabin. Mark Twain sort-of-very-nearly-kind-of lived in when he wrote The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County. Actually, only the stone chimney and fireplace remain from the original cabin that burned down.

Mark Twain Cabin

Site Marker

The hill Mark Twain's cabin is found on is called Jackass Hill. And by dingies, there was a large jackass in the pasture. No, maybe this month I should call it a donkey, a dignified Democratic donkey at that. Stand proud little donkey! You done good.

Jackass... Dignified Democratic Donkey, on Jackass Hill

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