An Artichoke Interpretation

Following our zero day where I did everything possible to make my leg better, I still had a sleepless night from the achiness in my leg and burning sensation in my foot.  I have an arsenal of medications with me, but I do my best to minmize their use to avoid reaching a point of reliance.  However, with plans to get back on the road and a decent amount of pain, I tried out one of my new drugs.  I have been taking 3 ibuprofen and 1 percocet four times per day.  Now add to that 1 Lyrica, a nerve pain killer.  We’ll see how it works?

By the time we got packed up and ready to leave Sacramento, it was pouring rain.  We loaded the car and hooked up the trailer as quickly as we could.  Before taking off I decided to take a “last check” of all of the trailer connections.  In the hurriedness from the rain and loopiness of the Lyrica, I dropped the the trailer hitch onto the ball mount without fastening it, so the connection was never made.  The hitch was just resting on top of the ball.  It wouldn’t have taken long before we would have lost the trailer.

For our meals, rather than finding a consensus, we decided to start rotating picks.  I picked Thai with the chicken satay the night before, so it was Mom’s turn to choose lunch.  Surprise, surprise…Mexican.  Fortunately, we just happen to be in “Mexico City,” surrounded by several Mexican restaurants.  Purely from the aesthetics of the building we stopped at Caballo Blanco.  Not the best Mexican food we’ve had on the trip, but very good.  Everything was very fresh, and homemade right down to the corn chips.

Our destination of Modesto was only a short ride away, where we were meeting up with some people my parents ran into on a vacation, Reuben and Teresa.  Last summer, at a B&B in the Adirondack’s, Mom and Dad met Reuben and Teresa who were close to completing a cross-country biking trip on their tandem bicycle (  Intrigued by their choice of transportation, Mom and Dad talked to them for a while and then took them out to dinner.  Given our own cross country trip, Shannon and I were interested in meeting them as well.  We had a great visit learning more about their trip and seeing their amazing home that they’ve been working hard to restore.  They also gave us some great advice about parts of California that we should check out and explore while on our trip.  Of particular interest to us was finding artichoke farms.  Very familiar with eating artichokes, but unfamiliar with the actual plant, Theresa gave an impression to help us visualize.  When we do see the plant, I will be sure to repost this interpretation for accuracy.  Thanks so much Ruben and Teresa for a great visit and afternoon in Modesto.


About bhoefen

Going on a road trip.
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11 Responses to An Artichoke Interpretation

  1. Matt says:

    Great use of Human Performance Tools! All that nuclear training saves the trailer…

  2. Aaron says:

    Now I am intrigued! I MUST see an artichoke farm!

    See you in a few hours!!!

  3. Dad says:

    So Bret – this is the first I’m hearing about the near loss of….my trailer!! I’m glad to hear it’s “riding in the same direction”.

    • Cousin Mike says:

      That was my best laugh of the day! “Riding in the same direction”. Best line taken in content in the short history of this blog! Great writing Uncle Jim!!! I’m still laughing about that!

  4. Dan Siciliano says:

    I havent heard from your buddy selling the wristbands but I did happen to acquire one…

  5. Cousin Michelle, Mario, and Simona says:

    Glad you guys are back on the road and having fun! Keep on riding!!! And catch that trailer!

  6. Uncle Lee and Aunt Sharon says:

    Boy, they say to always go with your gut and lucky your gut was telling you to make one “last check” of the trailer before taking off! Must be the engineer in you – good thinking!
    What a great afternoon hooking up with your mom and dad’s friends and hearing about their cross country adventures and recommendations for places to go in California. We always loved that whole story of how they met in the Adirondacks – so awesome!
    Glad you’re back on the road. Wishing you sunny skies and Happy Artichoke Hunting!
    Enjoy the ride and HAPPY SPRING – yahoo!

  7. Marianne Borrelli says:

    Boy Bets,
    not too many can have a picture taken of them while eating and it turns out good. You look spectacular. So does Shannon. Rochester must be agreeing with you both!!! No place like home!
    Glad your back out on the adventure and glad you didn’t have even a bigger adventure to contend with concerning the trailer….
    I agree Mike ……… Funny Jim ( Riding in the same Direction)!!!
    Hi Aaron! Keep them all in line will you?

  8. Jessica says:

    Bret – when you find an artichoke farm, see if you can get your Mom to recreate the amazing dish we had at Phillips European. I think it was Artichokes French? Yum. Definitely not Mexican, but REALLY good.

    Hope that new pain killer kicks in quickly.

  9. Fred Borrelli says:


    You continue to inspire with your positive view and ability to keep your focus on overcoming major medical obstacles. Many other people would have folded up the tent – not you! We are fortunate to have you allow us to be part of your journey and I will be thinking of you on Friday. My mom had the same surgery and continued to raise eight kids with one leg – she maintained her priorities and I have benefited from her inspiration as I am benefiting from yours.


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