There is no lodging. For anybody, except the SOA bunch. The Thrust SSCers are sleeping anywhere they can, including in the hallways of local residences.

That night I am to rendezvous with Vann and Annie at their place way out in the middle of nowhere. They are lending me the use of an abandoned trailer on Fly Ranch. I am to meet them at their Hot Spring and they would escort me to my lodging. I had made nice-nice with a couple of members of SSC and I suggested they follow me out to the Hot Spring and just bask in the infinite warmth of the geysers of hot water.

As we lie in the hot springs, we are talking about the road out to Gerlach. There is nothing this wide open in Britain they are saying. There is no way you are going to find 80 miles of open road, with the only opposing traffic being that of the ghosts of Indians who have died in battle on the mesa. To these two blokes, this transport from Reno to Gerlach was an even more fascinating journey than the Antonov flight across the Atlantic two nights before. They said that the “gee-zer” was so fantastic that had it been used as a set in a motion picture, the audience would have scoffed at its authenticity. As it gushes blue and green under the stars and a full moon, I couldn’t argue.

As the night progresses, I marvel at the irony of the Brits tapping into the Spirit of America. They were soaking up and drinking in what many of us have taken for granted, ignored and attempted to bury: Americans are free-er than those who dwell both across either pond or north or south of any line of demarcation.

It is bliss. It is one big mind orgasm, as our brains explode like Chinese rockets of another millennia. The fireworks served to welcome the spirits, not chase them away. As we groove on a pict of infinity and isolation, there is nothing but scorpions, bighorn sheep and supersonic cars within a 50 mile radius of us. I doubt these gents have experienced anything even remotely similar since returning to Ol’ Sod. Our bliss is a function of climate and geography, and underscored by the contemplation of the cosmos whilst naked in a natural free range hot spring in the Nevada desert.

Later, I try to sleep in the abandoned trailer. It is disturbingly peaceful. It is so quiet my mind begins filling in the blanks. It begins creating noise to emulate a night in civilization. The sounds that are spontaneously generated are a series of white noizes.

Danny Jo the Blind Hippie and His Woman the Earth Momma were squatting on the same property. I wouldn’t meet them until later.


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