Cat: A Cafè in Sacramento

I feel less depressed than I was last night. But it’s crazy early in the morning for me, and I’m in a cafè in Sacramento, so I’m definitely out of my usual element today. Sometimes changes of environment, even superficial ones, make the difference. Sometimes the brain catches on and realizes I’m trying to trick it into sanity. But not always.

My sweetheart and I are invited to a (birthday-related?) food tasting party here in the state capitol. (Am I using capitol right? It’s never spelled capitol, except when it is.) The original plan was to take the train up here, but that meant getting to the train station, and the closest ones are in Fairfield or Davis. The transit pinch is in Vacaville. The town in which I live. The smallest layover was about four hours in Davis.

Vacaville features truly minimal public transit options. If there were any fewer, the region would be downright rural. It almost is, given it’s an agrarian suburb.

As an aside, I was raised in a Los Angeles suburb, where kids didn’t drive without a license and newly-mandated liability insurance. Most of the kids in my neighborhood were like Joel Goodson (Risky Business, 1983, a very young Tom Cruise) in that they would get their license on schedule around age fourteen-to-sixteen years, drive their parents’ cars and often be given their own vehicle around sixteen-to-eighteen as a birthday present. Stories occurred once or twice a year of kids totaling their own Beemers or Porsches while driving recklessly, often while intoxicated. My parents weren’t so affluent, and the mandated insurance requirement ruled me out of using their cars. (In fact, the mandate ruled out my ever owning a car. I still don’t have a license today.)

But then, I cut wood near Woodford in 1987 and my cousin / boss put me at the wheel of our work vehicle, a beat-up Jeep. Out on the mountain roads, kids were expected to pick up driving around much like shooting or operating power tools. (chainsaws!) The vehicles, themselves, were often alleged, typically hobbled together from cannibalized parts, jury-rigged to functionality just enough to haul freight, or cruise a couple of miles into town. Vehicles were necessary to live and work, so formalities such as licenses were a secondary concern, even by the local (mostly voluntary) law enforcement. And kids as young as ten were driving around as circumstances required.

My localized transit pinch also means my therapist, impatient for my return to weekly sessions, will be waiting for at least a while longer. Possibly a considerable while.

I wasn’t coming up to Sacramento by train. Instead, my sweetheart and I decided I should come to Sacramento in the morning and café all day (cafè is now a verb).

And here I am.

I had forgotten the joy of planting myself in a cafè and writing. I wonder if the residential clubhouse will do me the same, though the hustle and bustle of city folk getting their coffee is part of the charm.

I need to get back to bicycling. I need augment my bike with panniers or at least baskets. Also I need a bicycle air-pump adapter. Maybe getting myself to a proper cafè once a week is the next step of my fitness regimen, and then work my way up to the four-mile trip to the local transit station.

And still, had I been bike-ready today, the rain would have made bicycling an unfun trip.

I’m in a cafè in Sacramento, and in this moment I feel like I am where I belong.


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