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Driving along the Skyline Drive on the crest of the Blue Ridge in Virginia, a weird sound emanates from somewhere up under the front end of the 1964 Ford Falcon. No one in the vehicle was too concerned, and the 3 young lads spent the night in that car, parked at an overlook, with the wind [more than] gently rocking them to sleep. As the sun rose, the vehicle was back on the road, but the noise began anew. Then … no brakes. Uh-oh. The Falcon glided around curves, down hills, desperately seeking an escape. Finally, it came … Route 211. Veering off the Parkway, the vehicle came under control as the slopes lessened and the curves became more gentle. It finally came to a stop as it was led into the grassy shoulder. The driver side front end had fallen into a ditch. Oh, wait. No, the front wheel had fallen off! Towed to Warrenton, VA. It looked like a couple of days were in store waiting for a part. What to do? Well, the 3 friends grabbed their gear from the back and out came the thumbs. Hitched a ride into DC. Don’t remember much of what we did in our Nation’s Capitol that day, except for a visit to a Scientology place where we wandered around a bit, and a man with a gun outside that had us scampering out of there pretty quickly. We hitched a ride out of the City – to the outskirts – and found a wooded area on the Potomac River, across from the Pentagon. One of the more unique places I ever remember putting out my sleeping bag. Anyway … middle of the night … I awake to relieve myself. Butch had a huge fire raging and was frantically feeding it. Bean was up in a tree. I could see a dark mass not far off – a bear. I went and peed, as originally intended … and, honestly? I don’t remember another thing. I’m pretty sure we weren’t eaten alive. True story, though … every word!

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