Day Eight Hundred Fifty Eight #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

I thought Jezer merely unscrupulous in his business dealings. Clearly his attempts to sell to people not bearing the mark (Elijah and me) would make him guilty in the eyes of the authorities. At the time I guessed that his view was just a matter of – no witnesses – no crime.

But that he bore a phony mark didn’t change my estimation of his character. And that was at the crux of my apprehensions to being in the same city as him.

As ever Elijah is unconcerned. He points out that we have no idea how we will be treated much less whether or not we will be allowed to enter the city.

He just knows that we must go there.

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Revisiting Our 1975 SoCal Trip

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I have been scanning the photos from our many albums lately to preserve them for the future. (Alarmingly a few are fading away). In that process I have not only come across more photos from our 1975 trip, but also other mementos – tickets, brochures, schedules, etc. from that adventure.

With this has come a better knowledge of what happened when.

Our flight down (via United flight 453, seats 13a and b) was a red eye, departing Seattle at 10 pm on October 19, and arriving at LAX at 1:34 the following morning. So I can now give an exact time for my ordeal with the splitting headache.

Our first day there was very busy.

Through the info in the album, I now know that the order of our doings were exactly opposite of what I had earlier recorded. We did Hollywood first (Oct 20 through 22) – our chance spotting of the Selznick studio – and tours of MGM – Paramount- Universal; and then Disneyland was second (10/23-24).

And my memory was jolted by these:

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I had forgotten we had toured the NBC studio in Burbank and took in the Tonight Show while there. But when I commented to my wife that I didn’t remember ever seeing Johnny Carson, she replied, “Of course not, Silly, Robert Goulet was his guest host that day.” Another jolt to the memory.

That particular detail came back to me. But who else was on the show for that evening?

I did a Google search and found a Wikipedia list, giving a day by day description of the Tonight Show episodes.  It contained a confirmation that Goulet was indeed the guest host for that episode. And it also listed Phyllis Diller as his guest on the show.

I can hear her laugh even now.

On Monday I will put up a page by page copy of the Disneyland booklet for that year under my research category. I hope that it may be of help to someone researching Disneyland in the 1970s.

[How much was the E-ticket going for? Or what exactly was an E Ticket? – certainly not what it is in our day.]

So stay tuned, and Watch This Space.

Day Eight Hundred Fifty Seven #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

We planned to let a whole day pass before setting off on the road to Damascus. Neither of us wanted to overtake Jezer and fall into his company.

We had just collected ourselves together when an army truck rolled up to the well and accosted us. They couldn’t understand us and we couldn’t understand them.

The man in charge searched us, then dismissed us in disgust. They remounted and sped away north.

The way ahead looked much the same as our route from the south, more rock cliffs channeling our path.

I fell into a discussion with Elijah about our former guest.  I supposed that the soldiers were in pursuit of him.

Elijah nodded and said, “His mark was false.”

Day Eight Hundred Fifty Six #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Jezer bid us farewell in the late morning. Charming as ever despite his failure to strike a deal or two. He took the eastward road, saying that he was headed for Damascus. It was the first we knew that we were further west than we had supposed, which meant our final destination lay somewhere north of us.

But the mention of Damascus resonated in my being. And lingered. So much so that I  asked Elijah if that was the waypoint through which we must pass before ending in Jerusalem.

His answer in the affirmative went a long way in explaining his former reticence. I would not have wanted to go there either. For it has been long under the mark.

Day Eight Hundred Fifty Five #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

His name is Jezer. He never ceased talking from the moment he entered our camp. He was bent on selling us something, anything. Starting with his camels. He couldn’t see how we could do without one, or better yet two.

We politely declined, but that was only the signal for him to bring out the rest of his wares. All in all he is entertaining, and quite the charmer. (Though there are moments when I see the greed for gold in his eyes).

And persistent, for this morning he was back to pushing our need for camels, and told us of his near escape from marauding soldiers, and strongly intimated that we would be wise to take up his offer.

Day Eight Hundred Fifty Four #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

For the time being, we’ve mutually agreed to hold up here to await developments. Elijah still holds back and is waiting for me to confirm the next waypoint on our way to Jerusalem.
A series of new images puzzled me. None of them indicated a destination. Or at the least, no correlation came to mind. Only one face after another, all complete strangers to me.
That is, until this afternoon. A man emerged from out of the west, leading a string of camels. And though this man was the same as the first of my images, there was one difference. He bore the mark on his forehead.
He hailed us upon his approach and begged leave to enter our circle.

Day Eight Hundred Fifty Three #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

I twisted my ankle on our transit last night. Elijah caught me before I hit the ground. Otherwise the injury would have been more serious.

As I sat there he rubbed his hands together creating heat from the friction. Then seized the point of the swelling. I could sense warmth radiating from there throughout my body.

In moments I was able to stand. He loaned me his staff as a precaution against further missteps.

We called an end to our night walk early for we came upon a well at a crossroads.

We drank our fill and found a place nearby to rest and pass the day.

Given the crossroads we had another decision to make, hopefully not under duress.

Day Eight Hundred Fifty Two #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

I took Elijah’s words to heart and pondered them during my quiet times. It required chasing away the images of our friends in dire straits. Something not easy to do, for I did not want to miss any opportunity to intercede for them in what I was sure was their current peril.

Elijah kept us on the move. Forward. For the only other way would be back to the scene of the attack upon us.

I took comfort from the fact that these rock formations hem us in on each side.

It was then that I realized that the Spirit had used the attack to channel us forward. In a way l feel it has helped to confirm our destination.

Day Eight Hundred Fifty One #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Not only did I lack confirmation, I confessed to having more questions than before.

Along the way Elijah had confirmed my suspicion that the first snowfall had been an answer to his petition on our behalf – a provision of water for the next step in our journey along an unknown path. A highly localized suspension of the drought. Purely for our benefit.

But – hence the question. Who was responsible for the crimson snow that followed. And did they know where we were? And if so, how? Were we under surveillance?

Elijah just shrugged and said it was obvious the enemy’s goal was to thwart us, but asked me to remember that the Spirit can use that opposition to help us.

Day Eight Hundred Fifty #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

I got us out of there as fast as we could go. Which meant climbing down from the rock shelf and feeling our way around its base until we sensed a level path beneath our feet.

At that point the snowfall slowed and soon turned to mist. We kept going. Through the rest of the day and through the night.

Elijah called a halt in a valley created by towering rock formations. They appeared to stretch onwards forever, corralling the slow moving sea of sand within the boundaries dictated by their will.

We looked back from whence we came. The sky was empty, holding the promise only of another hot day.

That’s when Elijah asked if I had any confirmation.