Trip Log – Day 151 – Fresno, CA

Midpoine to FresnoOctober 3, 2015 – Sunny, 90 degrees

Miles Today: 25

Miles to Date: 8,006

States to Date: 25

I woke this morning in a midcentury mirage. My warmshowers hosts live in an 1800 square foot ranch on an ample lot in the middle of this sprawling city. It was built in 1955, the year I was born, and has held its charms. I roused feeling light and expansive as the sectional sofa I slept upon and the fig tree beyond the patio doors. We enjoyed fresh fruit and yogurt with coffee for breakfast. The raisins were especially good – Fresno’s fame.

IMG_4457If the point of my trip is to observe a broad slice of American life, I can’t spend all my time in the Yosemite’s and Portland’s of the world. So, I decided to spend the day in Fresno. I began riding up and down Van Ness, Fresno’s classy residential district. Whoever decided to bring water to the desert was a lifestyle genius. It’s so pleasant to be among lush vegetation without any humidity. On a bright Saturday morning, affluent couples strolled beneath giant shade trees, next to green lawns and flowers. All so verdant, all so unsustainable.

IMG_4464 imgres-1

I pedaled downtown. There are a few ornate theaters and hotel blocks from the 20’s and 30’s, but Fresno boomed during the 1950’s and 60’s, so there are blocks of over scaled government buildings sitting large courtyards surrounded by seas of parking. The only crowd was a throng of men, mostly homeless, waiting to get into the library when it opened at ten. I interviewed a Pawn Shop manager about tomorrow, and continued my tour.

After a tasty lunch in a local tacqueria, I cruised by Cal State Fresno and spent the afternoon writing in the local Mcdonald’s, which also meant talking with laborers and attorneys and mothers. McDonald’s is our collective living room.

imgresI spent the evening with a cool couchsurfing host. Surge is the son of Mexican farm workers, a high school world history teacher in a overwhelmingly Hispanic high school, and a world traveller. He lives in the Tower neighborhood, Fresno’s hipster district. We strolled Olive Street and ate at a Mediterranean restaurant. We learned the limits of Fresno’s cool: they served falafel on tortillas.

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About paulefallon

Greetings reader. I am a writer, architect, cyclist and father from Cambridge, MA. My primary blog, theawkwardpose.com is an archive of all my published writing. The title refers to a sequence of three yoga positions that increase focus and build strength by shifting the body’s center of gravity. The objective is balance without stability. My writing addresses opposing tension in our world, and my attempt to find balance through understanding that opposition. During 2015-2106 I am cycling through all 48 mainland United States and asking the question "How will we live tomorrow?" That journey is chronicled in a dedicated blog, www.howwillwelivetomorrw.com, that includes personal writing related to my adventure as well as others' responses to my question. Thank you for visiting.
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