“A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us.”

So wrote John Steinbeck, an author I first read as a teenage but for a very unusual reason.  I played in a band and we called ourselves “The Grapes Of Wrath” – “The Grapes” for short. Danny, George, Al, Ray and myself all took it upon ourselves to read the book.

I got hooked on his books and read many, favorites being “Travels with Charlie”  – the inspiration for the title to our blog  – and “Cannery Row”  – The books opening words are – “Cannery Row in Monterey in California is a poem, a stink, a grating noise, a quality of light, a tone, a habit, a nostalgia, a dream.”

I wonder if John Steinbeck would describe the modern Cannery Row, a tourist trap  of seafood restaurants and cheap souvenir and ice cream shops the same way; I somehow think he would.