Critical praise for Christy!

For "Murder Hooks a Mermaid:"
"Author Christy Fifield creates the kind of characters that stay with you for a long time. Fifield’s new Haunted Souvenir Shop mystery, Murder Hooks a Mermaid has it all: a sunny, relaxed setting, captivating locals, delicious food, and—of course—murder! Delightful amateur sleuth Glory Martine is back with her wisecracking parrot and charming group of friends in this thoroughly entertaining adventure. Don’t miss it."—Julie Hyzy, National Bestselling author of the Manor House Mysteries and the White House Chef Mystery series
"A whodunit with a dose of the supernatural, "Murder Hooks a Mermaid" is a worthy successor to the series opener and showcases Fifield's talents for plotting, characterization and humor." - Richmond Times-Dispatch
"Quirky and unique, a heroine for whom you can't help but root. The story sucks you in." - The Maine Suspect
"With a lovable cast of characters, good conversations and a great setting, this well-written book is a terrific read." -- Dru's Book Musings

For "Murder Buys a T-Shirt:"
A refreshing new sleuth! - Lynne Maxwell, Mystery Scene Magazine
"A fun book that will make the dreariest of days a little brighter! Socrates' great Book Alert" - Socrates' Cozy Cafe
"An entertaining and clever Florida whodunit" - Harriet Klausner
"Hilarious! A great murder mystery with well-written characters" - Paranormal & Romantic Suspense Reviews
For the Georgiana Neverall Series:
"Christy Evans will find legions of fans with this new series" - Sheldon McArthur, Lincoln City News Guard
"Funny and entertaining -- a solid mystery filled with likable characters." - RT Book Reviews"
Cute cozy mystery debute -- wry humor -- adorable dogs" -Publisher's Weekly
"Will have you giggling out loud! Four Stars." - Kathy Fisher, The Romance Readers Connection"The Book is good! Keep them coming, Ms. Evans!" - Mystery Scene
"Evans delivers a fast-paced mystery with admirable finesse!" - Sharon Galligar Chance,
"Christy Evans has a hit on her hands" - Harriet Klausner,
"Christy Evans is aces. I'll be very suprised if Sink Trap isn't an instant hit with cozy readers!" -

Friday, June 28, 2013

Day Two, Part One: Christy Mystery Goes to Trees of Mystery

Introduction:  I recently passed a milestone birthday, one of those numbers that as a child seems so impossibly large that you never expect to get there.  It came at the end of two years of personal disaster (see this post for an explanation, if you haven't already read it), and at a time when I desperately needed something good in my life.  I tossed around a lot of ideas of how to celebrate surviving the last year (lots of hospital time was involved) and making it to my birthday.  Finally, my husband and I decided to go see the Redwoods.  We had driven through several times, but always on the way to somewhere else.  This time, we would just head south and see what we could see.  We did some searching, settled on a few (very few!) priorities, and started making plans.  Somewhere along the way, we discovered a cool resort south and east of the big trees, where every "room" was a converted caboose, and decided that would be fun and unusual, exactly what we were looking for.  

These posts are my daily reports of our trip: the things we saw, the places we went, and the people we met as we drove approximately 1,500 miles in the course of six days, and had an adventure.  I tried to write down my impressions each night before bed, or over my first cup of coffee in the morning.  I wanted the memories to be fresh, undiluted by another day or days of travel and experiences.  I can only hope you enjoy reading them a fraction as much as I enjoyed living them.  (If you missed Part One, click here.)

Day Two: Christy Mystery Goes to Trees of Mystery

(I thought I was going to do a post for each day, but when I started putting in the photos I decided this had to be in at least two pieces.  We'll see if I can get it all in two ...)

Slept, not late but until 9 or so.  Then up for a quick breakfast at the Best Western in Brookings, and on the road to California.  Down 101 through Crescent City to Trees of Mystery.  Yes, Christy Mystery went to Trees of Mystery.

Wonder Stump Road, one of the storied places in the Redwoods
Along the way, though, we had a couple adventures. Several years ago we drove through the Redwoods and saw a road sign for "Wonder Stump Road."  We promised ourselves we would come back someday and try to find out what is a "Wonder Stump."  Well, Steve did a little investigating and found that it was an old, old stump, named long ago.  It had fallen and then a tree had grown out of it.  It was on a postcard in the 1930s or 40s and became famous because of it - here's a link to the National Geographic page about the Wonder Stump.

 It is now on private property, and we heard it is nearly rotted away, so we didn't get to see the actual stump.  What we did see (and, sadly, failed to get a picture of) was a one-lane road through massive trees that came right to the edge of the pavement with exposed roots occasionally intruding into the single lane.  In one place the road took a sharp right turn to avoid a giant tree that had been left standing right in its path.  It was simply one of the most impressive things I have ever seen.

The street sign for Star Trek Lane, with no signs, of course!
We also stopped to take a picture of a street sign that wasn't there.  Which was exactly what we expected.  You see, on the map that shows Wonder Stump Road there is an intersection with Star Trek Drive.  Now we had to see that - but we didn't believe for a minute that the road sign would be there.  We fully expected that it would have been stolen, and we were right.  We took a picture of the empty pole to prove our point.

Finally, after our drive down Wonder Stump Road and on through Crescent City, we reached the Trees of Mystery.  This is one of those roadside attractions that was born in the late 40s, in the boom that followed the end of the Second World War.

Paul Bunyan, icon of Trees of Mystery

There are "life-size" statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe in the parking lot, inviting you into the attraction, From there you pay admission and start up a path that leads through an old-growth redwood forest.

Paul's famous Blue Ox. Babe

The main trail is 8/10th of a mile and has some ups and downs.  It's a fairly easy walk, especially since visitors want to stop every few feet to take in the sights.

World's Largest Family Tree.  Impressive? You bet!!

One of the many fascinating things along the path is a "family tree."  This is a tree with multiple trunks growing vertically from its branches.  These new trunks start from branches that are 40 or 50 feet (or more) off the ground.  The picture here is of the largest family tree, with twelve trees growing up from the branches on a single tree.
One of the uphill stretches along the main path.  
 Partway through you reach the lower terminal of the Sky Trail, a 1/3 mile gondola ride through the trees that rises 571 feet to the upper station.  Once there, the view is breathtaking.

One the gondola cars on the Sky Trail
The ride is pretty spectacular, too; seven minutes of gliding through trees hundreds of feet tall in a small observation car.  The capacity of the cars is supposed to be six, but some of them better be little kids!

The ride soars over a trail that can be hiked from the base of the ride to the upper terminal.  It is only recommended for hikers in reasonably good physical shape, equipped with proper footwear.  We decided riding was the better choice.
Looking down the hill at the car in front of us

Below the car you can also see a rough staircase which, according to the ride operator, is used to access the towers for maintenance.

As I said, the view from the top was amazing.  You can see for miles, incredible vistas of mountains and forests.  There are also a couple osprey nests in the distance, though I wasn't able to get a really good photo of them as .they were so far away.  And in the other direction I could see the ocean

Ocean to the west, and ...
mountains to the east.  Spectacular!!

This isn't even the Wonder Stump, but it's pretty impressive!!

I was surprised at how much time we actually spent in Trees of Mystery.  I went prepared to walk and gawk and get back on the road, but we actually spent close to three hours, stopping to take pictures and crane out necks trying to see the tops of trees that towered 200 feet and more above us.  We exchanged picture-taking with a couple families, so that they could all be included in their vacation pictures, something that made us both happy, and gave us the chance to have pictures of the two of us together.
Christy Mystery and the wonderful husband, writer J. Steven York

Still holding hands, after all these years!

When we reached this carving, there was a man taking a picture of his wife in front of the carved heart.  I offered to take their picture together, which seemed like a good idea to me.  He wasn't so sure, but his wife grinned at the suggestion and quickly dragged him over next to her.  It would have been churlish to refuse her offer to reciprocate, wouldn't it?

So we had our picture taken in front of the giant carved heart.  Our picture-taking couple were amused by our holding hands, but we still do, after nearly thirty years together.  Yeah, we're like that.

Hang on, the day isn't over!  Stay tuned for Day Two, Part Two, in which we visit Eureka and the Avenue of the Giants,

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