It has been a long cold winter. Well it was cold for California with temperatures dropping to freezing and snow flakes spotted in San Francisco. It was cold enough for me to think about getting married or buying a dog. But I did neither and just waited for spring. The weather finally turned nice and I decided to get out in my new to me 24 year old convertible. I wanted to rack up some miles on this thing while gas is still $4.30 a gallon.
In addition to the car I now have a new GPS. The old faithful Tom Tom just did not fit well in the little car so for $69 I upgraded to a very tiny Garmin. Then I loaded it with a program that has every quirky sight there is to see in the U.S.A. It is put out by a company called ‘Roadside America’ and it is amazing how many sights there are to see very close to where you live.
So off I went and the first thing that caught my attention was “The Longest Covered Bridge West of The Mississippi” in Knight’s Ferry. I have been to Knight’s Ferry several times and never saw a noteworthy bridge and Knight’s Ferry is a very small town. I found it this time and it was worth the visit. Of course it begs the question of why anyone would build a covered bridge in the foothills of California. Covered bridges, I thought, were used to keep snow and ice off of the bridge in colder climates. But maybe they didn’t get the memo in Knight’s Ferry.
So then I was off to Jamestown to see the world’s smallest jail. So I meandered a few miles through the lush green landscape of the gold country and came upon this little tiny jail. It is only 400 square feet. I don’t know if it was small because the miners who ended up in it were small or there just wasn’t that many of them. But because it was small it got moved around a bit being used as an attraction in Pollardville at one time. But it is back where it belongs..
Then it was off to Angels Camp which was made somewhat famous by Mark Twain and his tales of the frog jumping jubilee. There is a cairn there with a bronze frog on it, staying in the theme of this is “The Lamest Excuse For Visiting Angels Camp-Letter To Roadside America To Follow”. But right across the street is a real estate office with a more photogenic frog. So that is what you get.
After the somewhat disappointing frog thingy I drove off to Jackson to see a Wooden Train. It makes no claim to being the longest or smallest. It is just a wooden train. Apparently, it was used in a TV set at one time and had to then be put somewhere. It does beg the question of what happens when they fire up the boiler.
By this time it was clouding up, getting cold and the bottom of my tennis shoe had fallen off. So I limped on back home leaving some of the local treasures to be explored another day.