last night I walked the 3.5 miles or so from ARTIC to the BevMo! on Tustin to get my birthday gift from them, a $10 coupon with a $10 minimum purchase. I wanted to cut it really close because I had to borrow money from the future to pay the overage and any tax; according to the rules of my budget, if I spend the next day's money, there's no way to pay it back; I have to fast or forage the next day.

so anyway, I picked 3 decent beers: Stella and Hofbrau lagers at $2.99 each, and Wells Banana Bread beer for $4.29. except that when I took it up front, the Wells was $4.49. you can never trust the shelf price at that store. anyway I didn't fight it, walked out with my beers having paid only $1.21, and opened the HB at the next park bench. as I walked, I drank. it did a lot for my mood. by the time I was just a few blocks from ARTIC, I saw the big Mexican guy who had given me the sandwich, and offered to split the Stella with him. this was some place of business, now closed, at which he'd found an electrical outlet next to a side door and had his cell phone plugged in, and using their wifi to stream movies. thug life.

he was telling me about the thieves that live along the river, from whom he buys his electronics stuff like the cell, he got for $20. they sneak up on people not paying attention, grab what they can and run. so all those times I turned around to find someone following me, both along the trail and in town, could well have been attempted robberies. I had been lucky.

once the Stella was drained, I decided to move on. it was getting cold again. walked out towards the Denny's to check the coffee price there: $2.99. nope. but, a young lady offered me her leftovers, so I munched out on the bus stop bench outside the place for a while. then decided to go back to the Ralph's and see if it was 24 hours. it wasn't, and I turned back, and some cops decided to make a Terry stop on me. didn't go so bad this time. I did answer their first two questions, but then I smartened up:

"How's it going?"

"it's cold."

"Where you headed?"

"just walking to stay warm."

Long pause. "Where do you usually hang out?"

"why all the questions? am I free to go?"

"Yes, we were just asking questions to make sure you were OK."

I turned around and started walking on the word "yes", and only nodded at the followup, which was just bullshit. the anger warmed me up for the next few blocks, but then I had to dig out my socks and put them back on. I hadn't prepared for these cold nights. I resolved to spend $5 of my "miscellaneous" fund (also $3 a day) and change my ticket to this morning's bus.

when I got to ARTIC, about 0330, there were only a few people hanging around, and nobody at bus stop 11, which was where the Mega was supposed to be. here they have no sign, not even like the tiny one in SF letting you know you're in the right place, and no employees there to pre-check tickets. eventually a couple showed up to take the bus, and we chatted for a bit. and they opened the station just after 4:30, so I was able to warm up and use the bathroom. this might just work out. so I waited at the end of the line, $5 in hand, and told the driver what I wanted to do. he hemmed and hawed for a moment, thinking out loud, then said aw, go ahead, get on the bus, and refused the $5!

so now we're at the Buttonwillow stop. I didn't go in. my electronics are charging, and I'm planning to take an expensive Golden Gate bus to Petaluma as soon as we land in San Francisco. this trip has had lots of learning experiences, and I'm anxious to get a good night's sleep and absorb them, and prepare for the next Kinetic race.

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last updated 2016-04-28 14:02:56. served from tektonic.jcomeau.com