My trip was amazing! It was nothing like what I expected. I expected mountains, yes. That was a no-brainer. What I didn’t expect was technology withdrawal! 45 minutes before we got to our rental cabin, my phone service cut out. I had hopes that their website was correct and that they had wifi. But the page, last updated in 2009, was wrong. No email, no voicemail, no Facebook, no Google. It was a whistling vacuum of information. It was relaxing once I got over the struggle to reconnect.
Even the pay phone didn’t cooperate with me. I felt transported back in time standing in that booth, wrestling with the clunky cord and trying to follow the instructions of that female voice, pushing scratched metal buttons. The spider in the corner was not impressed.
So we explored, and it was great! The region was a mixture of small-town charm and spectacular views.
There were three dams up there, all lined up along the river: Gorge Dam, Diablo Dam, and Ross Dam. We drove along roads chipped into the mountainside and walked trails surrounded by metal rails so we wouldn’t plunge into the ravine. There was a sense that gravity was different here.
This is where my family gets 18% of our power. (That’s what the plaques and brochures said). This is why I headed up here in the first place, to show my kids where their tech gets its juice.
Tuesday evening came and my 11-year-old was giddy with excitement. He was overjoyed to return home in the morning to his internet connection, his cable TV, and his computer games. He’s getting to be that age. So we came home to use that 18% as much as possible (and they have been). I sure hope they remember though!