Continued from the previous post …
“After supper I spread my blankets, laid me down and went to sleep. I did not intend to sleep. When I awoke, I went for my cattle and found the cow lying down, the horse I could not find. I called for the horse but no answer could I get. I then called the cow, while I was near that I might have her to help me call the horse. The second time of calling the cow, the horse answered me, and while taking the cow to the wagon, the horse came into the camp and I made them secure to their posts. A thought came now came into my head to harness the horse and go where I had seen the smoke. It was not yet ten o’clock.
“I went on and came to the camp, which was but a short distance from the road. On approaching I saw two men sitting by the fire, whom I addressed, saying, ‘Good evening, gentlemen. About half-past six I saw the smoke from your camp which I intended to reach, but coming to a creek where there was good grass and water, I stopped to let my cattle have a good nibble, so I remained there about three hours, and now I have come on here to see if I could remain with you the rest of the night?’ While I was speaking the foregoing, the whole camp came around me. ‘Strangers, can I remain here? I have come a long distance, and perhaps can make a half hour of some interest to you.’ ‘Stranger, make yourself at home with us,’ was answered. ‘I have said that I have come a long way, which is true; I am all the way from the Pacific Ocean, alone.’ ‘You say that you are from California. Where is your home?’ ‘I am, and my home is in Massachusetts, and I am on my way home.’ ‘Do you think that you will be able to get that cow to that state, stranger?’ ‘I do; she has already traveled eighteen hundred miles. You can see in what condition she is, she speaks for herself.’ ‘She is a fine looking cow. When did you leave California, stranger?’ ‘The first day of June 1882.’ ‘We are going somewhere, and have started for Oregon, but may change our direction. We have heard much about California, what a glorious state it is! You have had an opportunity to know something about it, stranger?’ ‘Yes, I know something about the state. There are as many climates in the state as there are counties; some parts are hot, some warm, and some parts cold. You can get any temperature you desire; but that is not all. California gets her watering done in December and January; some parts in November; and some parts in February. Humboldt county I know more about than any other in the state; it is also one of the healthiest in the state. West of the coast-range of mountains the temperature is the most even, neither too hot nor too cold; on the east side of the range it is warm, in many places very warm. What I dislike is the many months without rain. Say, the last rain was in February and there will be no more until December. The best months are February, March, and April; they are fine months, but in May it begins to dry up; June and July are hot, and August is very dry. By the latter month you will have to start your sheep for the mountains, or they will starve on the way. A person from the East going to California will find the months of November, December, January, and February much different from the East. They will forget our Mays and Junes, but when the sun gets high and the winds are blowing a gale, and the sands are drifting like snow, then, and not till then, will they think of home. We have better days in Massachusetts than they can have in California.'”