Thursday, May 4, 2006

Off the Beaten Path for a Minute

I've hit a snag.

Before I can continue my story, I need to know 100% which route our family took to travel from Virginia to California in 1961. Did we go south like I thought or did we go north which would explain stopping in Boy's Town in Nebraska? I need to get this accurate.

I've googled my little brain off for two days trying to find a 1961 map of Virginia. Nothing concrete came up. I thought that if I just could see the map laid out, it would jostle the ol' memory and I could figure out which route it was. It's so hard to remember one week out of almost 52 years of living, but I'm determined.

I found someone on the Internet yesterday that sold map scans and asked him if he had a 1961 map there that could help, explaining my situation. So, he sent me two. One of Virginia in 1961 and one of the area I would have been entering in California to head on to Fort Ord in 1961.

I've been trying to figure them out and while they are very helpful, I'm still confused. It looks to me like we might have taken Rt. 58, but then again, did my step-father go north and take another route? Or, veer further south?

This is driving me crazy and I don't know why I'm obsessing so. I've started this and I'm not going to do this half-assed. I want to retrace the entire trip and if I keep at it, I'll be able to figure this out. It's a mission that needs completing and I'd like to have this much completed before I head out west in September.

Oh, did I tell you we've made up our minds and are going to go ahead and book for September? The heat won't be as bad and hopefully it'll be less congested, too.

But, you know what, I love traveling. When I say "it's in my blood," this is the reason. This trip that I'm going to retake, the one I'm writing about, is the reason.

As a matter of fact, this house I'm living in right now, I've lived here longer than anywhere my whole life. Ten looooong years in the same house. Amazing. I think when you get older, you don't have the strength to find another one when the present one will do just fine.

Only, the present one isn't doing just fine. It's getting too run down and I'm afraid I'm going to have to find another place soon. The worse thing about it is that it's across the street from a chicken rendering plant and situated dab smack in front of the only highway on the whole Eastern Shore. I can hear the traffic out my window. I especially hate the boom, boom, boom coming from some worker across the street at the rendering plant who've we complained about and does no good. Why do young people have to have "systems"?

So, anyway, I'm not-so-young and restless. I can't wait until September.

Oh, I have a there anyone reading this blog that went to Abraham Lincoln Elementary School in the early sixties? What became of that? I've been really trying to get some information on it and am coming up with practically zilch. I think it's been torn down, but not sure. Thanks...and anyone who grew up in Burbank in the early sixties, I'd love to hear from you. My email address is thewriterslife (at)

Thank you!


  1. Sep should be a good time to go to LV. It is quite hot there in the summer, although it will still be pretty warm in Sep, too.

    I emailed a couple of more suggestions of where to look for maps from that era. I will be interested in what you find as your search for info progresses. You have a fascinating project there!

  2. I sent a comment to Vegas Vixen (on the sidebar in my blog) to ask where she would suggest for you guys to stay while there that is a nice place and not too expensive. Here is her suggestion:

    Dick, have them try the Sahara. It's pretty reasonable, and on the north end of the strip.

    The north end of the strip is nearest to downtown and the old part of Vegas. Go check out her web site and if you have any other questions about the town she would be a good one to ask as she has lived there quite awhile.

  3. I didn't grow up there, but I can give you some info. The school was closed in 1979. I think there's a library on the school site now.


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