I leave at night and hit the road, when I have any time off, I hate to waste it. I worked evenings and get home, pack, and leave. The drive wakes me up, energizes me.
Midnight crossing at Cajon pass, heading to the Four Corners of Kramer Junction, to Red Mountain and Johannesburg. Headlights on high beams, what is that, a rabbit running across the road? How many has that been, five or maybe six?
Highway 395 is old here, skinny, two lanes, dangerous, the rise and fall of the road, the curves. Long row boxcars on a siding, crossing lonely desert railroad tracks. Climbing a steep grade, soon we will be connecting to the 14. Stop at the Coso rest, and stretch the legs. What the all night market closed, no big Dr. Pepper that sucks!
The Marquees still on at Lone Pine Film Museum. Slowing down to the one stop light in town, turn left. Almost there, Movie Road, the Alabama Hills I know the roads like the back of my hand. Asphalt gives way to dirt, smooth to wash boards, feeling my way through the dark. I pull into my favorite spot, cold, dark, and I sleep a little.
Wake up, grab the camera and look for the “First Light” there it is, it is a good day. I am a night guy, now I have converted to a day person.
The road is where my heart is, it is my lifeline, the ribbon I must travel.
Alabama Hills near Lone Pine California Highway 395
© David “Bodie” Bailey