It’s about time to leave the city for a week or so—we’re driving down 1 to Monterey and Big Sur for a couple of days, then on to Santa Barbara, and then to the scary Los Angeles. We’ve loaded up on Blue Bottle Coffee, and the camera batteries are charging as we speak. Yes, I’ve been reading Kerouac’s Big Sur to get a jump on the trip. I suppose I should have gotten some Henry Miller at the library, too, but I forgot about it and picked up some William Maxwell instead. In the back of my mind I hope the trip will inspire a new project to make up for the failure of the last one, but then I remember the last novel was conceived on the last trip to Big Sur. I’m over-thinking this. All I should be doing is enjoying M’s company, taking pretty pictures, and enjoying the scenery. Next week will be all about writing the syllabus for the online craft class…
View from Bixby Canyon Bridge.
Bixby Canyon Bridge, or Raton Canyon Bridge in Kerouac’s Big Sur.
McWay Falls, Julia Pfeiffer State Park. Big Sur.
Highway 1, Big Sur.
Instead of finishing Kerouac’s Big Sur, I picked up Richard Brautigan’s first published novel, A Confederate General in Big Sur and read the kernel of thousands of student fiction theses. This was on the shelf of the place where we’re staying at in Big Sur, which is mostly stocked with hiking guides, computer programming guides, history books, and trashy mystery novels. Finished it outside of Julia Pfeiffer’s house near McWay Falls while M took pictures with the DSLR. It’s an interesting book, a quick read, although I think the timing of its humor has come and gone, whether that was the 1960s or my early 20s.
Nobody won the Pulitzer this year. The correct choice would have been Denis Johnson’s Train Dreams. I remember loving that story when it came out in the Paris Review back in 2003, and I wish I had my copy of it here while I listen to the woods of Big Sur.
Sunset from Fletcher’s Roost.
Another view from Bixby Canyon, Big Sur.
One from the Big Sur trip last month.
One more from the Big Sur trip in April. (Taken with Instagram at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park)
Hurricane Point, Big Sur