RidicuRyder challenged me to create a map of the kingdom, with 30 points or more. You’ll notice there is no “map” in the traditional sense attached to the post, but I’m not sure if I’ve failed the challenge or not. Read below and let me know what you think in the comments.
Close your eyes to all but these words, and I’ll attempt to draw you a map of the Kingdom. Let your mind set aside all else and take this trip with me…
The seat, the throne, of the Matticus Kingdom sits along the shore of the Pacific Ocean, in the town called Oxnard (1). The throne (2) is mobile though, and has resided in other places before and will move again undoubtedly. The surrounding lands are a mix of onion and strawberry fields (3), oil wells (4), domestic neighborhoods, and the normal industry of a large sea-side city. A fifteen minute scenic drive east on Pleasant Valley Road (5), sort of following the contour of the coast, lays Camarillo (6), where the Kingdom was seated for a few years before moving to Oxnard. Camarillo boasts the main road through the kingdom, the 101 freeway (7), that extends north to Santa Barbara (8), and beyond to parts of California beyond the outskirts of the Kingdom, and that extends south to Thousand Oaks (9), Westlake Village (10), Agoura Hills (11), Calabasas (12), the 405 freeway (13), and down into Hollywood (14), which are all cities that lay within the commuter lifestyle radius of the kingdom inhabitants, or are cities that have played important roles in the past. Camarillo is also the north-south hub for the 118 freeway (15) which leads to Simi Valley (16) and represents the northern edge of the commuter circle. While the Kingdom Cats (Belle and Sara) were adopted in Camarillo, at the Petco (17), the non-profit company (Cat’s Cradle Rescue (18)) they were acquired from is based in Ventura (19), the city directly to the west of Oxnard along the coast.
Beyond the immediate realm of the Kingdom, far to the south, San Diego (20) is a historical point of interest as the place where the Jester earned his education and met the Queen, who was living in Thousand Oaks at the time. But that’s a story for a different day. Mission Beach (21) is a place of significant importance in that area, along with Mira Mesa (22) and La Jolla (23). Then, traveling from the south back towards Oxnard, other places of interest are Carson (24) (come on lads, come on LA Galaxy!) and LAX (25), which has been the launching point of more adventures than I can number.
Then, far to the north, on the western side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, through Bakersfield (26) and the little towns dotting the 99 freeway (27) and before reaching Fresno (28), the 180 highway (29) winds into Kings Canyon (30) until the road ends in Cedar Grove (31). The ancestral family has been camping there for time out of mind. Well, since around 1940 when it was established. On the eastern side of the Sierra, there is Ridgecrest (32), the Jester’s point of origin, and then following the 395 highway (33) up and up and up is Mammoth Lakes (34) where the Jester and his Queen were married.
Returning closer to the throne, Silver Strand Beach (35) and Hollywood Beach (36) are favorite places to spend the warm sunny southern California afternoons. The Camarillo Outlets (37) and The Collections (38) in Oxnard, house many attractions that capture our time and money throughout the year. The Surfliner Train (39) has been taken on several adventures up to Carpentira (40) and the Santa Barbara Zoo (41). College Park (42) and Peninsula Park (43) are two places the Little Prince enjoys for rambunctious play time often. And, this list would not be complete, without Fire Station 8 (44) which we sometimes drive out of our way, by request, so we can see if the doors are open and the shiny red trucks are visible.
You can fully open your eyes now. Could you see it? The dimples while the Little Prince swung back and forth on a swing at College Park and the sun sparkling off the crashing surf at Silver Strand Beach? The tumultuous Kings River and the smooth snow covered slopes of Mammoth Mountain? The congested traffic on the 101 as the sun sets into the Pacific and the wide open stretches of black top as the 395 bakes in the desert?
Perhaps you’ll just have to visit and see it all for yourself.