In 1975, I was living with a lady I'll call KT while we were working in the Student Financial Aid Office at U.C. Berkeley; and, after our collaboration writing a book of advice for California applicants for student financial aid had failed (due to my hard-headedness), we decided to take a trip from the Bay Area to Baja California in a very used 1967 VW bus I was driving at the time. Both of us innocent as hell and not sure if we were still in love.
KT, the Bean, and me departing, by Personal Files
We crossed over at
Tijuana (2000), by Ken Lund at Flickr Commons
T. Jefferson Parker is the best police procedural writer I've ever read, and
In fact, California Girl's Chapter 30 stands alone as a perfect little jewel of T. Jefferson's art - after 284 pages of Southern California during the Vietnam War, of John Birchers, Nixonites, motorcyclists-hippie-druggies, a Drive-In Theater Converted to a Drive-In Christian Church, beautiful women and beauty queens (one of whom gets murdered and her head cut off), hard-headed men, and of course Southern California Law Enforcement persons.
Inside the John Birch Society (2005), by cdrummbks at Flickr Commons
By Chapter 30, two San Diego County Sheriff officers -- Lucky Lobdell and Nick Becker - have decided to drive incognito down into Baja in pursuit of their primary suspect in the beheading of a local (Tustin, California) beauty queen, the suspect being a highly intelligent and vicious motorcycle-riding-drugdealer whose base of operations is in Baja California, well south of Tijuana.
Back in 1975, KT and I had our first memorable close encounter with Mexicans at a beach on the coast side of Baja, near I can't remember what town, probably Mulaje or close to it. There was a secondary dirt road off the primary dirt road off
The first page of Chapter 30 of
"Nick steered the red rocket south on I-5 while Lobdell smoked a cigarette and looked out at the new nuclear power plant at San Onofre.
The Country Squire had two surfboards strapped to the top and food and water and camping gear in the back. Nick and Lobdell had tried to dress more like surfers than cops but Nick figured they just looked like cops in sandals"." (p 285)
Baja West Side Beach (2010), by Flavinha Crazy ! at Flickr Commons