Sprung in Oakland

So, I intend to make a Homeric birdwatching trip to the middle of Mexico, then back across Mexico to pop out somewhere in Texas. Next, I will negotiate the Southern states to pop out in North Carolina to visit Ben. Finally, drive across country back to San Francisco.

My only worry about this trip is truck suspension. Poor little Tacoma is carrying a lot of weight. I have already fitted airbags to boost the suspension but I do not trust them. They sometimes blow or leak. I used to have a Range Rover that had air bags for suspension – useless. https://thequietripple.com/2012/08/24/v8/

The idea of an air bag singular, or airbags plural, blowing on some lonesome trail in a gulch somewhere in the mountains of Guadalajara is disquieting.

I decide to install an extra leaf in the rear springs. This will take the weight off the air bags and generally stiffen the rear suspension.

Leaf springs.

I go to A-1 Springs in Oakland. You should go there too.

Mérite le detour.

I drop off the truck at 08:00 and ask Ruben, the owner, where I can get breakfast. He says he doesn’t know anywhere close by and when I show him a diner not too far away on Google Maps, he says ominously,”You don’t want to go there.”

I protest that it will be OK. It can only be a 20 minute walk and I have lots of time. ” No man, you can’t walk down there, I’ll give you a ride.”

He does and I have the best breakfast.


I am the only non African American anywhere to be seen but everyone is very sweet to me; probably because I am an old timer.

I have time to kill and so I go to the Oakland Zoo. I love zoos and the one in Oakland is excellent. Go there! It is on the side of a mountain and has incredible views over the huge animal enclosures across the bay to San Franciso.

I do not trust this guy.
Bald Eagle
Californian Condor
Grizzly Bears discuss Roe vs Wade
New hair style for Giraffes
Timber Wolves
Contented Eland
Don’t know what this bird is. So many different sparrows in the U.S. Later, I now think it is a California Towhee.
Egyptian Goose

Around lunchtime I get a call from Ruben; the truck is done!

Has turned over a new leaf.
Ruben is star. Send him a Xmas card.

Great day! Truck rock solid, best breakfast, lots of animals and driving over the Bay Bridge always thrills me.

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