Trail of the Firewriter…
2010 Road Trip: Day Fifty-two

Day fifty-two started early. I couldn’t sleep so I went to the casino floor to play a penny slot machine. At four in the morning things are starting to thin out in the gaming areas. I was playing a machine with a Groucho Marx theme. Groucho announced that I had said the magic word. On my screen appeared a duck hanging from a rope. At that moment a flashy blond lady sat down beside me. I thought, wow, these slot machines are getting sophisticated. The jackpots are getting better. My bubble burst when the blond asked if I was alone and needed company. I knew then she was not part of the slot machine payoff. She was a hooker looking for her own payoff. I politely declined her offer and agreed to share my machine with her if she would match the five bucks I had already invested. She looked around the room and saw no prospects. She smiled and handed me a five dollar bill. We didn’t win but she was interesting to talk to. When she left to go back to work I realized I had taken money from a hooker. I might have to buy a super fly hat and a gold chain. It is a crazy world sometimes.

I went to the Laundromat after the sun came up. I returned to eat lunch and went to bed. I picked up Sharon and Brian at the airport around 7pm. I helped them carry their things to a sweet on the 32nd floor of the Venetian Hotel and Casino. The view of Las Vegas at night from the top of the Venetian is magnificent. It made me think of how lucky we are to live in America. I had traveled over 7000 miles. I had visited great cities and honky-tonk bars. I met interesting people. I had walked the decks of two great war ships. From the launching pads at Cape Canaveral to the rugged hills surrounding San Diego I found a strong people doing their thing and not afraid to fight for the right to remain free. A picture I took inside the ready room of the aircraft carrier Midway summed it all up. Two little girls are sitting in front of a display of knots that sailors must master in their training. They are trying to tie those knots with ropes put there to challenge people touring the ship. Those little girls were precious and reminded me of my kids when they were little. It warmed my heart and made my road trip worth the effort. I am a lucky guy.

Little girls tying knots
A repeat picture but one that should touch your heart.

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"Fire Horses" book authored by firefighter R.J. Haig.


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