I took advantage of the good weather to get a day ahead. I drove to my end point at Huntington State Beach just south of the pier, intending to catch Bus #1 back to my start point – but the morning traffic was tough, so I was a little nervous about my timing. The bus runs only once per hour.
As I arrived in Huntington Beach I was breathing a sigh of relief – I still had 15 minutes ’till the bus arrived. However, the State Park System threw me a curve…
There’s virtually no free parking in HB and most meters have time limits – so I was depending on using my State Park Pass in the State Beach lot, right across the street from the bus stop. It was open yesterday, but today the gate was closed! There was a sign directing me to an alternate entry a mile south, so I blasted my way to it.
I entered the gate, then had to drive a mile north to the parking lot nearest to my bus stop (with a 10 mph speed limit and lots of State Park ‘enforcers’ nearby). Five minutes ’till bus arrival.
I grabbed my stuff, hung the parking pass on the rear view mirror, locked the car then started jogging to the bus stop. Three minutes ’till bus arrival.
I still had to cross busy PCH, and it took an interminable amount of time for the light to change, so when I saw a break in traffic I just went for it, arriving at the stop one minute before bus arrival.
Ironically, the bus was 10 minutes late… well at least I wasn’t out of breath and shaking when I tried to feed my bills into the meter!
One interesting interaction today. There was a homeless man on the bus as I rode to my starting point. Oddly enough, I saw him dozing on a bench hours later on the beach as I walked. I thought, “Here’s your sign”, and I gave him one of my McDonald’s gift cards and some spiritual literature.
It was a very windy day, but thankfully it was a tailwind. I was grateful that I wouldn’t have to turn around and walk back, and felt sorry for the obviously miserable (but stalwart) people passing me in the other direction. Some were literally walking blind – holding their hoods over their faces and peeking out from time to time to make sure they weren’t walking into a lamp post.
This is what most of my walk looked like today, but if you were able to zoom in – right in the middle of this photo – you’d see the towering buildings of Long Beach. I passed them about midway through my walk yesterday. It’s times like these – looking back up the coast when I can see where I’ve come from – that I realize just how quickly towns move from ‘tomorrow’ to ‘yesterday’, then from ‘last week’ to ‘last month’, and finally to ‘the good old days’.
Tomorrow’s gonna be a gloriously rainy day, so I’ll cocoon at home, and (maybe) walk again on Saturday.
22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies.24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. ~ Romans 8:22-25