Several miles later we stop in the wee town of Hazen for gas and a pee at the Hazen Market, an old canopy gas station. Jarrett’s middle name is “Hazen” so he’s happy to be stopping here in such a well named Nevada town, and this independent station’s a wonderful old place, undoubtedly another story we could pursue if we had 4 or 5 more days.
We all get out and wander around, fill the tank
I talk with the woman inside, attractive and pleasant. She seems to be the right age to maybe have been a hippie, maybe went to Woodstock or Altamont, maybe lived on a commune, or maybe I’m totally wrong. She knows some stuff about the Lincoln Highway. “That’s not the original Lincoln you’re traveling on,” she says. “There’s a guy who lives not far away and he’s taught me about it. The original is on the other side of the building. The remains of a concrete roadway are still there, overgrown, but you can see how the road used to go.”
She also tells me this Hazen Market once housed the Hazen post office, pointing out the outline on the ceiling of the old post office walls. Now this business is part convenience store, part gas station, part souvenir stand, serving the unpredictable mix of functions that an independent “market” can. When I go to the restroom, I have to take a picture. It’s the first gas-station restroom I’ve ever been in that has a bathtub.
When we get in the van and hit the highway again, Bob is chuckling.
“What’s so funny?” I ask.
“Jarrett was talking to those two guys,” says Bob.
There had been two young guys hanging out at the Hazen Market.
“And Jarrett pointed to the sign, and said, ‘That’s my middle name.’ And the one guy said, “What? Hazen or Market?'”
We drive into the sunset, heading for Reno.