SACRAMENTO, Calif., USA - The fourth week of school is wrapping up today, with two lab classes full of writers and stacks of things to read on my office desk at the university.
But my mind is already wandering south, back to Arroyo Seco, where we will be right after Christmas for the balance of the winter and spring.
The classes are going fine - great in fact - with a crop of good students who seem to actually be interested in what I have to say about the sad state of journalism today and what they have to do in this hostile media environment to find a job. And I mean really hostile.
But what has been distracting me (in a good way) are emails from amigos who are already laying their plans for visits and also the search for the perfect four-wheel drive, extended cab pickup truck - and a nice travel trailer to drag behind it.
One truck that's in the running, so to speak
Last year the tow vehicle and travel trailer fell into place by accident, something I need to remind myself of daily as we struggle to find either wheeled vehicle. Prices have gone up - or it just isn't quite late enough in the fall for the travel trailers to become something people want to get out of their driveways.
And the trucks? Well, for all the talk about low prices for gas hog vehicles, they're not that low.
At least matching my budget.
But perhaps the hardest tug on my attention (towards Mexico) are the emails about when people are coming down and what we will be doing and questions like, "Will the Captain's Gig be ready to sail this year?"
The answer to that question is yes: I found the centerboard in my storage unit. The Captain's Gig sailing dinghy will launch in the laguna near Arroyo Seco this season. (NOTE TO SAILORS: the laguna does contain crocodiles so tipping over and falling in the water is not recommended.)
The Admiral and I will be scrambling to get the downtown lot sorted out as soon as we arrive. Our amiga Tia Richardson sent us some great photos of what it looks like now that the vegetation has started to kick in.
Ramada, trailer and palapa
Bodega has a front door, but needs some paint
From the street
More on all of this later.
The Admiral, on jury duty at the downtown courthouse, just emailed me with a lead on a truck.
Time to get back to work.
Temple Beth Hillel school starts Aug. 20
1 week ago