Tuesday, May 27, 2008


My best friend from high school still lives in southern California. I had not seen him in years; in fact we had lost contact until sometime last year. Needless to say we have burned-up the web with our e-mail remembrances and the catching-up with each others lives.

Ron and his wife live about 30 miles from our old stomping grounds and about a mile and a half up. He lives just above the mountain resort town of Idywild. When they became “empty nesters“ they moved “up the hill” which was always his dream. Ron was something of a mountain man even back in school. He and Kathy opened a shop in Idywild. Merkeba sells tea, candles, wind chimes, kites, flags and so on. The main business is tea. They process, blend package and sell tea. The store is about two years old and according to Ron has been doing well since the start. Beside the retail store, they also do a booming mail order tea business.

We drove up the mountain to visit them at their shop. We didn’t spend any time in the mountains during our last trip to SoCal. Idywild holds a world of memories for me. Our church camp was there so naturally I remember those times fondly. And I hiked and camped on the peaks many time as a late teen. In fact Ron and I had been snowed in there one time. Idywild is the place where the rattlesnake got me. Idywild is the place where lightning almost finished me off. And as I said Idywild almost froze me and starved me once. It’s a big mountain at almost 11,000 feet. As it has the quickest rise in elevation in the 48 states there are some fantastic vistas.

The drive up was much as I remembered with surprising little change. It was breath taking. The views are amazing when it is one of the rare clear days. On our day the conditions were fairly good.

We arrived at Ron’s store and it was as if time had frozen. Little had changed in all the years. Other than having families, a few gray hairs and a few extra pounds. We picked up on our conversations just were we left them so long ago. The day flew by quickly.

We had such a great time we made plans to meet later in the week in a town below the mountain for dinner and more remembering.

No comments: