The week went past very slowly on the road south to Los Angeles. He stopped at Nepenthe to see his friends Lolly and Bill, the owners. He camped a few nights on the beach and spent the night with friends at Morro Bay .

He pulled into his dadís truck yard and was greeted by the truck drivers he had grown up with; all of them were glad to see him and were interested in the bike, and what the eye meant on the gas tank. Full of his step motherís cooking and listening to the Dodgers on the radio at night with his dad, he headed out for the Grand Teton range in Wyoming, he had been thinking about a girl, named Doris Hanrahan , whom he had met in San Francisco a few years ago. The next day the bike cranked over and he headed east on Interstate 15, to Las Vegas then north through Utah towards Wyoming.

Doris was all smiles to see Jim, and her father gave him a job working at the ranch for children with Autism. Jim became attached to one boy named Johnny and Doris was beautiful, but the three-some was scary, Jim felt like roots would grow if he stayed. He would miss Doris but the highway called that lonesome sound, and Jim departed.

Two weeks later while working at a dude ranch outside Jackson Hole for a widow and her daughter, he called a friend at the San Francisco paper and got Morgana Mendoza phone number, whom he knew would be spending the summer on her fatherís horse ranch south of Jackson Hole.

Bella answered the phone and was thrilled that Jim remembered her. Morgana broke onto the line and immediately invited Jim to stay at the ranch with them and he could sort things out about their brief relationship at the Texas ranch a few years ago. To Jim's surprise when he arrived a Mexican bull fighter named Miguel was convalescing at the ranch and was obviously involved with Morgana. Jim felt foolish to have barged in but Bella had grown up considerably since he had last seen her in Texas, and she was hanging on his every word, Morgana, was peeved that Bella was casting eyes toward Jim, but the cards had been dealt, and Jim would play for at least one hand. Besides he was a newspaper reporter and was intrigued by this Senor Miguel Cordova and his life as a bull fighter.

The foursome swam, picnicked and ate wonderful lunches on the veranda. Miguel was fascinated by Jimís bike and Jim likewise excelled to learn the steps to spin the bullfighterís cape. Just one thought entered Jim's head as to the morality of the bull fight, and the outcome that was always preordained. This bothered him, and so did the triangle which surrounded him in the shadows of the ranch. The night air was getting cool and the days shorter, the highway ribbon of adventure displayed itself in his dreams that night, the next morning he was gone, headed south for sand and cactus.

More to come ..........




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