But first, cold water prepares one for California
I did a lot of swimming while I was in California. The water of the Pacific Ocean was pretty cold, but I was prepared for it. Anyone who thinks the Pacific Ocean is cold ought to try a Minnesota, spring-fed, gravel pit. Now, that is really, really cold water, and I grew up in it. And, even before California, I'd dumped a canoe a couple of times in Lake Superior. Try holding a rope between your teeth and swimming ashore in "The Lake," towing a canoe filled with water and an idiot hanging onto it, dodging mini-icebergs along the way. (There he goes, sidetracking again.) "The Lake" has cold water, but I think the old gravel pit has both it and the Pacific Ocean beat. By the way, most old gravel pits are great places for moonlight parking, too.
Some of my California swimming was close to shore. Some of it was 90 miles off shore, give or take. Either way, if I would have known at the time great white sharks liked to prowl the California coastline, I probably would have stayed in Minnesota. Well, not really. Who spends any time thinking about sharks, anyway? I saw live sharks and dead sharks, cute sharks and ugly sharks, smiling sharks and sinister sharks, and I didn't give any of them a second thought. They really weren't very frightening. The ones I saw, that is. It's sort of like, "beware the ides of March."
Pretty obvious, isn't it? I've got California, especially San Francisco, on my mind. Or, is it princesses, divas and contessas I have on my mind? Or, is it something else altogether? With those questions hovering above us like ethereal spirits, it is time to wind down the exercise.
The Ideal Couple: Episode III
Moving to San Francisco and wearing flowers in my hair? I don't know about that. Maybe I'll just head down there long enough to find a princess or a diva or a contessa, and use my powers of charm to convince her we should settle down on neutral ground. Not in San Francisco. Not in Minnesota. Concentrating once more on great romances in the wonderful world of motion pictures, but this time not just movies confined to San Francisco, one possibility would be for us to find a peaceful, middle-class town and to live our lives as normal, ordinary, the-kind-of-couple-you'd-want-next-door people. People like Marge and Norm Gunderson.
Remember "Fargo?" You betcha. Great place to live, and it's a hotbed of entertainment up there in Fargo, Nort Daakotaa. I saw Don Dokken actually live on stage up there last summer. What's San Francisco got that Fargo doesn’t? And, isn't it preferable to be "up there" instead of "down there?" I'd even be willing to change my name to Gunderson if I found the right princess or diva or contessa, or reasonable facsimile thereof. Maybe she would want to become a sheriff. You have to confess, there is something compelling about a woman wearing a badge. Just check out Marge.
I'd even make breakfast for my contessa. Ya, you betcha.
I suppose I must admit that it would be possible some very few young ladies would soon grow disenchanted living in the midst of potato and sugar beet fields, and yearn for a more glamorous, adventurous existence cruising the highways and byways of Europe in the footsteps of Jason and Marie in "The Bourne Identity." Yes, I suppose members of the fair sex might prefer that to the simple life of touring the badlands, hunting antelope and visiting the grounds of General George A. Custer's last duty station. I suppose Europe would be ok. Sometimes, to win a princess or a diva or a contessa, a man must compromise. All right, we'll do it your way, but you have to drive.
It costs how much in euros? Well, I suppose, if you say so.
With apologies to Geoffrey, here ends the new Pardoner’s Tale -- except -- maybe -- for an epilogue tomorrow to complete a circle.
Music Note: Listening to (and, again, sort of watching) Queen ....
Specifically, "Live at Wembly '86" ....
(Wish I would have seen them perform live .... little late now)