More or less. The Anderson family is out west at the moment, combining some college visits for our daughter with a little bit – a far too little bit – of hiking in the Sierra Nevada, up out of Bishop on the eastern side, on God’s finest highway, Highway 395.
Daughter will do some climbing with the fine folks at Sierra Mountain Center, probably a quick half day up Crystal Crag, and Jean-Marie and I will do something very easy, as we have no time this trip, probably just a few hour round trip from South Lake around the Chocolate Lakes and Chocolate Peak – say hi to spirits of my favorite Sierra mountain range, the Inconsolable Mountains, and then out again. We’re driving out from Claremont later on, after my daughter visits the Claremont colleges, and I visit my parents’ gravesites at the lovely and peaceful Oak Park cemetery. I strolled last night past my old high school, Claremont High School, which seems to be doing very well.
We’ve been hopping colleges and universities, big and small, and I’ll have some thoughts later. But one at this very moment … it had been many, many years since I had set foot at UCLA, being a proud Bruin of the class of 1983, former co-captain of the UCLA fencing team, etc., etc. When I’ve been out in California since then, it’s usually been at Stanford, at the Hoover Institution. So I had long just built into my brain that no place could compete with Stanford for sheer beauty as a large university. I take it back. My goodness, UCLA is every bit and more beautiful than I remember in memory. My wife and daughter, who had never been there, were completely stunned. So was I. I’m glad I send it a little cash each year. I strolled through Dodd Hall, where I studied philosophy so many years ago, and the law school, where no one was present … except for Stephen Brainbridge, who looked so deep in thought, probably cranking out a new book on the financial regulations and corporate governance, that I couldn’t bring myself to disturb him!
Adieu. Lots of water and the sort of emergency kit in the car that would make Glenn Reynolds proud. We are off to California and Nevada, the Empty Quarter.