Jerry Garcia - Somewhere in Utah

by Herb Sobel
(Trent woods, NC, USA)

It was July, 1969. I was on my way from Chicago to San Francisco on my motorcycle. It was hot as hell on hwy. 70 about 60 miles west of Grand Junction, Colorado I stopped at dusty gas station just off the road.

Parked the bike under the canopy to get some shade and bought a coke from the vending machine. Soon a Utah State HP car drove up and dropped off a passenger. I remember the car had a beehive logo on the door. I wonder if they still use that. The man who got out was about my age and had a guitar and a sunburn. He walked over to me and asked if I was going west. I said, yeah. He wanted to hitch a ride but my bike was so loaded up with gear that was impossible. I bought him a coke and we chatted a while. His car broke down 15 miles back and he was hitchhiking in the middle of nowhere. The trooper picked him up to keep him dying out there. Before I left I asked this disheveled traveler his name.

'Jerry Garcia' he replied.

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