April 14, 2005 Bonus Blog
A very nice ride up the hill today. Left the office at ten, rolled down the window and kept it down. Thought I would get hit with major allergies as I climbed through the tall weeds and roadside flowers up through Black Canyon City and on up to Sunset Point, but it was just delightful. Only sneezed once, just past McGuireville. Finally had to roll up the window just this side of Mund’s Park. Downright chilly. Stopped at a Standard Station for gas ($2.49 a gallon, $24.52 house account).
Got into Flag at 12:30, picked up Thomas and headed downtown (was irked to see that gas at the Circle K next to T's apartments was going for $2.29 a gallon). Traffic horrible, knotted all the way up Milton and especially on Old Route 66, going through the railroad underpass. Lucked out and found a parking spot on San Francisco, saw Tom Carpenter walking towards Martan's and we went inside to "grab a bean." Gretchen and Peach (waitress, cook, sisters and co-owners respectably) were excited to see Thomas and proudly pointed at his graduation card, pinned to the wall above the second table. Naturally that's where we seated ourselves, and Gretchen made a big deal about everything and said to all of us, "Don't you think I look like I could be Thomas' mother?” And I thought to myself of using the great Rex Allen line: "Well, you could have been his mother if you hadn't been so damn choosy when you were younger," but I chose to be mature and held my tongue, for once.
Tomas's friend Kendra joined us and so we had a fine talk about all things Flagstaff and the impending Book Festival which was about to launch on Friday. I had the huevos rancheros and decaf coffee ($42 cash, includes tip, I paid). I asked Tom Carpenter to nominate some great places for dinner and he recommended to us The Cottage Place and Josephine's. I also talked to Tom a bit about some of our challenges at True West and that we needed to expand our net. Tom mentioned Dave Jenny at Northland Press and how they have gone through similar challenges and I realized I needed to talk to Dave while I was in town and called him to set up an appointment.
I checked into the Hampton Inn at two (room 111, ground floor, comped by the Festival but front desk gal insisted on getting my credit card probably because I look like a guy who would rent a lot of porn but what they didn’t know is that I have sworn off that bad boy behavior ever since I read Seneca but how could they know that?).
Thomas and I had reservations for seven at The Cottage Place, which is a little bungalow on Cottage (get it?), between San Fran and Beaver St. I wore my fringe jacket knowing full well this is probably one of the last times until late November that I'll get to wear it. Meal was good, not great, although Tomcat claims it is the best salmon he has ever had. Bill was steep ($92, plus $19 tip, biz account, but I plied my son with a glass of wine and got him to open up and tell me about his life)
Big day tomorrow. Got a radio interview in the morning, the session with the editor of the Utne Reader and Bob Early of Arizona Highways and then an appointment with Dave Jenny at Northland at four.
"The whole art of life is knowing the right time to say things."
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