Sunday noon the Rigpa retreat at Squaw Creek ended with fireworks inside us and snow outside the windows. As we left Squaw Valley it felt as if we were driving in a convoy…mostly towards route 80 West…destination Sacramento. That was to be my route back to Lake County. It promised to be a rather a long drive but with a hot bath, a massage, and Masterpiece Mystery at the end of the trail.
Instead…it took two hours to drive .2 miles…just to get on the freeway.I found mantra a fine companion as I ate my banana and peanuts from our final celebration (the Tsok Offering Feast). Shortly after reaching the freeway, I pulled over to the chain control station and had my chains installed. I asked the guy what advice he’d give me…as if I were his own mother.
“80 West is closed because of lack of visibility. They’ll be turning you around about 1/4 mile ahead. You’ll be going back towards Truckee. Get the first room you can. They’ll be going fast.”
The snow flying down on us and the snow underneath us piled up higher. Truckee rose up before us, but where were the lodgings?
Ah. The Truckee Hotel. I pulled over and went inside. There was a line and only six rooms left. When my turn came, I snapped up the second to last room. Then, when I parked my car in the overnight lot, I drove into one of the last slots.
The Truckee hotel opened as the American House in 1873. It was conidered te best place to stopover between San Francisco and Salt Lake if you were taking the train. After over 130 ears in operation the Truckee Hotel still welcomes visitors to the Sierras.
I walked up the stairs to room 218. My room was European style…that is, the bathroom is down the hall and there’s a basin in the room. Fine with me. No TV, but WiFi. Signs of the times. Cozily heated by radiator.
I met my retreat mates, coming and going to supper. We all counted our blessings to be inside, safe, and warm in the middle of a blizzard.