Winter makes a difference

Ron Walker

Ron Walker

My computer shows Wilson Canyon with a boulder the size of a bungalow sitting on Highway 208 in Wilson Canyon. If it had tumbled another few feet Smith Valley might have some prime lake front property for sale. My neighbor, Erica, is the bookkeeper for Raley’s Grocery store in Yerington and won’t be going to work for severable months it seems. Oops, belay that; just heard from her. Apparently, there is a dirt back road, that she is using, to get to Yerington and the phone just rang and Dr. Wartgow, our brilliant young Smith Valley doctor just told me he drove the back road to the South Lyon Medical Center in Yerington and it’s safe enough for his nurse Emily to make it to the Smith Valley (she lives in Yerington). Proof of our pioneer spirit is showing itself.

Recently, I made a trip on 208 and Highway 395 to Gardnerville. The 208 parts is a sinch, nothing but a gorgeous view of the Sierra and Antelope Valley. Driving along the upper reaches of 395 is another matter and puts me on my mettle. It had snowed and the road was both slushy and still freezing. There weren’t many cars, so I relaxed and “Poked” along enjoying the heaps of snow piled up on the tree branches and distant mountains covered with snow. It had been at least 20 minutes when my reverie was disturbed. I looked in the rear-view mirror and saw a string of cars building up behind me. From the other lane cars were whizzing by splashing water into our lane. I tolerated the situation as long as I could and held onto the steering wheel with both hands ever tighter. I felt trapped by my circumstances. I turned on my hazard lights and started looking for a place to pull over and let the “speeders” go by. It wasn’t long until I found a tiny widening of the road, so I pulled over, wanting to let them all pass. Only one, a pickup truck moved slowly forward. When it was alongside, the passenger side window was down. An attractive brunette woman was driving; “Hi Ron, I’ll pray for you all the way down,” she said smiling. Immediately I fumbled around in my brain but couldn’t come up with a name and finally said “Thanks, that would be great” and cautiously pressed the accelerator. I started feeling really, really good and didn’t feel rushed. The snow looked beautiful, the mountains regained their majesty and life was good. The thought came to mind that she is an angel. I have had encounters with angels before. I don’t talk about it much. Angels usually just do their goodness and then move on. For one thing, she knew my name even before she saw who was driving my car she had said “I’ll pray for you all the way down” and I believe she did. I wonder if you have had any encounters with angels.

Ron Walker can be reached at


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