Journals & Photos  
Home > Journals  

Cayucos 2009 Personal Show Journal by Christian Willis, May 15-16.

This year's Cayucos show was great! We arrived in Santa Barbara around 7:15AM on Friday morning, and stopped by Sambo's for our usual breakfast. The beachfront was practically a ghost town, and we were the first car out front. They had a special Two-Two-Two combo meal for $4.95, that included two eggs, two pieces of bacon, hash browns and two pancakes.

Although the big fire from the previous week had been contained and Hwy. 154 through Cachuma Lake was open, we decided it would be best to bypass it and just take 101 all the way up. Given the signs warning of delays, I think we made the right decision. We arrived at the show hall around 9:45 and began setting up our table. Everyone was quite surprised to see Maggi seven months pregnant! We got a lot of congratulations.

My first purchase was over at Bruce Tooley’s table: a CD 145 [087] with the “NGR” in Hemingray embossed over “GRA”. I also picked up a nice CD 168 [028] over on Dwayne’s table with the missing crossbar in the “A” in “MADE”.

Among the other great pieces on Dwayne's table was a whole slew of Hemingray floor tube insulators. I immediately saw all my money disappearing, but I knew I'd probably never see such a large group of floor tubes ever again. I picked up 4 tubes, all sizes I didn't have. According to Richard Dawson (who Dwayne bought these from), the large clear/ice floor tube was retrieved from the ghost town of Bodie before restoration work began in the 1960's. These floor tubes also belonged to Mike Guthrie before Richard got them. Of the 4, my favorite is the "split plain" style, which is a two-piece floor tube with "tongues and grooves" to fit together.

Over at Glenn Adkins’ table, I noticed he had a couple of pieces I was looking for: a CD 1138 johnny ball (small style) in practically mint condition, and a CD 124 Patent Dec. 19 1871 [010] in a pretty blue aqua (unlisted color).

Richard Dawson also had a couple of pieces for me, including a CD 219 No Name (which I already had one, but for $5 I couldn’t refuse a 2nd!) and a bridle wire insulator. According to Richard, the bridle wires were made by Hemingray. It doesn’t look much like a Hemingray product to me, but I decided to get it just in case. Supposedly they’re about as hard to find as the floor tubes.

For lunch we headed over to the smokehouse, but was dismayed to find the inside crammed with people and the line starting to form out the door. Forget that! I like Jim’s sandwiches, but at $9.50 each, and getting more expensive by the year, we decided to head over to “Chez Chevron” (the Cayucos gas station) and take advantage of their deli instead, and I’m glad we did. I hadn’t tried their sandwiches before, but certainly wasn’t disappointed!

We got back to the show hall, and I got “commissioned” to draw a sign for out front, since Sid & Isabel weren’t able to bring their trailer with the big wood sign on it. Dave LeForge also asked me to design a more permanent solution on the computer for future club events.

I spent pretty much all my money on the first day, but I was totally happy with my purchases. The floor tubes were the best of the show for me. We went back to Los Osos around 6PM that night and had a great dinner of meatball sandwiches and pasta salad.

On Saturday morning we were up early (I didn’t want to be the last one to uncover their table like last year!) We picked up a breakfast burrito and a maple bar at Chez Chevron and split both. The burrito had just been made and was still hot, and the maple bar was the best I’ve ever had, period.

I sold very little at the show (after all, I bought the table mainly for a place to sit :) but did sell a couple of my Laugh Lines books. To my surprise, we did win an insulator in the raffle: a CD 430 Australian C.C.G. It had been awhile since I owned an Australian piece, so I figured it would be fun to have one again.

The BBQ was excellent as always (although my dad did not partake, a little wary from getting sick last year). The sausage was a little scarce this time, but it was still really good and I wish there was more. Afterwards I helped tear down the tables & chairs, and we said our goodbyes and headed back to Los Osos. By that time it was almost 4:30, so we didn’t have time to stop at any of the Cayucos antique shops. We didn’t need a dinner, as the barbeque had us pretty full. I had brought along our hard drive with our old family home movies on it and showed them to my dad, and worked on creating a DVD for him that night.

On Sunday morning we met dad & Nancy at their church, and stayed for the service. Afterwards, we said our goodbyes and headed home.

On the way home, we stopped by the "A Glance Into The Past" antique shop in Arroyo Grande. The antique shop had the best selection I'd seen in a long time. In one of the back rooms was a windowsill filled with fairly decent insulators. I got quite a shock (and had a rather good laugh) when I saw one of my own business cards sitting among the insulators! Apparently that dealer had visited our Cayucos show that weekend.

A few booths over, we found a bunch of records, and I picked up a promotional 45 of John Fogerty's Eye of the Zombie, a Flying Burrito Brothers album (sadly after the Gram Parsons era), and the only Tom Lehrer album I didn't have: An Evening Wasted With Tom Lehrer. Maggi also found a Betty Crocker’s cookbook.

I was all ready to go, when I spotted three purple insulators sitting up on a display cabinet… two CD 154 Whitall Tatums and a CD 145 W.G.M.Co. My first thought was "well, let's see how much they overpriced these guys…" To my amazement, the Whitall Tatums were priced at $14.75 each! They were mint, and actually under book value. I was even more surprised when I checked the price of the purple CD 145 W.G.M.Co: SEVEN dollars. Without knowing the value of the piece, I knew one way or another it had to be a good deal, so I excused myself and walked out to the car to check the price guide: $75-100. Score! I went back in there and snatched up all three rather quickly. The guy who was ringing up our purchases said that the dealer had just put them there that morning. Good timing. :)

That made for an awesome end to a great weekend, and made the miserable traffic back through L.A. actually worth it.

My impromptu sign for the show. C'mon in!

Bud, Christian, Maggi
(and "Baby Willis")

Maggi and Christian eating some great BBQ!

Bud and Maggi

Home | Database | About Me | Wanted List | What's New | Journals & Photos | Laugh Lines | For Sale | Links | Contact Me