Sky High Thoughts 6-16-2014

Weed, CA is in a beautiful location. Views of Mount Shasta are picture postcard perfect from everywhere, no matter how mundane the place. I drove through McDonald’s to emerge at the end faced by a breathtaking view.
But alas Weed is a poor community. I asked the clerk in one of the souvenir shops about the town. He tried to think of large employers and got stuck after naming 3. He said most of the town is on assistance. Houses are run down, storefronts are closed. He said they only do well when there are tourists. My conference this weekend brought cash into the town, but the clerk says these events don’t happy frequently.
I noticed the main traffic is from long haul trucks, parked along every street at the end of town where I stayed. These are the trucks with the sleeping cabs, so they are not staying at hotels. They are getting food at the Burger King, McDonald’s and Taco Bell, the triangle of poor nutrition around my hotel. I did not see a grocery store, movie theatre, postings for community events. One medical facility and nursing home. One cemetary. No pet store or vet.
I don’t need to be a mall rat, but I am spoiled by having all my needs met in a five minute drive to Target or Menards. The hotel desk clerk said they have to go 80 miles north or south to find a mall. I passed a Walmart in Yreka, which is not helping matters.
Mountain or not, I don’t think I could live here. I guess I am too worldly. I recommend visiting Northern California, one day. I will be back. And frankly, there is a view of the Minneapolis skyline coming north on 35W that can take my breath away, almost as much as a mountain.

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