A young woman who likes to travel and camp out pulled into Pittsfield yesterday morning from California, giving all indications that adventure is still alive and kicking.

The young lady is Miss Kathryn Black, from near San Francisco. Sausalito, to be exact, “on the golden side of the Gate.” Although no beatnik, she’s been on the road since a year ago last August.

Miss Black, 23, says “vagabonding is a family tradition.” Her father just got back to Sausalito from a two-month tour by motorcycle of Japan, she says. He’s a circulation district manager for the San Francisco News and Call Bulletin.

Miss Black attended San Francisco City College for awhile and has taken various night college courses, but she considers her trip “has perhaps been more educational than a college stint.”

Untrue to the family tradition, Miss Black was working quietly as a secretary for a paper company, when she says, “One day I decided I didn’t want security. I was born in San Francisco and I’d never been out of California. I thought I’d better find out what it was all about.”

So she bought a second-hand Volkswagen truck, which she dearly loves. It’s nickname is “Der Berggeist,” which means “mountain sprite” in German. Miss Black’s mother was German, and Miss Black can speak a little of the language. She’s never had any trouble with “Der Berggeist,” unless you want to drag in that bit about the fuel pump in Calgary, Alberta.

Well, Miss Black set out from Sausalito and went north to British Columbia. Then on to Montana, Wyoming, and the Black Hills of Idaho. In the Black Hills she settled down for four months as a waitress, to recoup funds.

“In the midst of last winter,” she relates, “I went to Minneapolis and waitressed there until last July. The thing I like about waitressing is that it enables me to get to know local people. Also, it’s an easy job to get on a temporary basis.”

From Minnesota she went to Canada and camped in northern Ontario, “until the cold chased me out.” She’s been in the Adirondacks and Quebec, and then down through Maine.

For a couple of nights she camped on Mt. Greylock — “got kind of chilly.” But yesterday morning she pulled into Pittsfield State Forest, where she plans to stay a couple of days until she gets a letter about the bean pot.

The bean pot is the reason she’s stopping off at Pittsfield. The bean pot was left behind by a friend of her father’s, Mrs. Eve Buck. Mrs. Buck, well-known in Pittsfield, has been in San Francisco for about a year, where she’s an interior designer for the General Fireproofing Co. Miss Black met Mrs. Buck while home for a Christmas visit, and Mrs. Buck said if you ever get to Pittsfield pick up my bean pot.

Miss Black is now waiting for a general delivery letter from Mrs. Buck to tell her where to go looking for the bean pot.

This Story in History is selected from the archives by Jeannie Maschino, The Berkshire Eagle.

Community News Editor / Librarian

Jeannie Maschino is community news editor and librarian for The Berkshire Eagle. She has worked for the newspaper in various capacities since 1982 and joined the newsroom in 1989.