I spent a cold weekend standing on soccer fields in Redding, California. There aren’t a lot of reasons to go to Redding — youth soccer tournaments aside — but The New York Times amazingly saw fit last year to publish a travel feature on 36 hours in Redding. (One wag among the fellow freezing parents noted, “The series is usually 48 hours, but it was adjusted for Redding.”)
The one sight in Redding well worth seeing is the Sundial Bridge, a pedestrian span across the Sacramento River, designed by Santiago Calatrava. Even on a cold, cloudy December day, it was a great experience. And I can testify that a bunch of boys love to try to shimmy up suspension cables, even if they are freezing.
More typical of Redding, however, was our amble through the Olde West pawnshop, located conveniently next to our hotel. It was, as far as I could tell, the busiest place in town. A few people were pawning things, but the real crowds were around the three-quarters of the store devoted to guns. Plenty of hunting rifles, of course, up there in the woods and mountains. But most of the interest was in the many sleek black and silver handguns. Instituting effective gun control is a political non-starter in the US, but I wish it could happen.