Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Wagon Wheel

Well another weekend has come to a close and more of this “dream land” state has been traveled by the entourage. From wine country to surf city the diversity of this land continues to boggle our minds.

The word that best explains the nature of this leg of the trip is “spontaneity”. After the useless KKMI shipyard crew finishes a days work, we hit the road and drive wherever our SUV will take us. On Thursday we found our selves in carousing through the fertile hills of wine country. Rolling through Napa valley and Rutherford, making a stop at the Moet Chandon vineyard and Winery. Upon establishing a great relationship with our hostess and Stince volunteering to be the sober driver, we were bombarded with samples. Mingling with middle aged couples stinking like the unmistakable smell of American money and picking from a list of the finest bubbly in the country was amusing. Put us four in a situation like that and the details stop there. After purchasing a few fine bottles of pinot noir we hit the road to the Rutherford grill to have one of the better meals of our lives (not to mention no corking fee).

A busy Friday came early as we were awoken to the mast being lowered into the living room. Putting in a solid 9 hour day of cleaning battery conneticions and stringing sails, one of the workers suggested we spend our weekend in Monterey Bay. At around 5pm we made the decision to pack an overnight bag and head south. Some bad traffic, a meal, and a few hours later we were checking into the Ramada in Santa Cruz. To our delight Santa Cruz was just infused with 30 000 college students and the night life was vibrant. Vibrant enough that when morning came around we though it would be in our best interest that we check out the famous pier, ride a few coasters and keep heading South.

Next destination Monterey. The coast was absolutely spectacular, red and yellow vegetation commingled with wind sculpted dunes and ferocious waves . The odd pack of surfers bobbing in the water was quite amusing. We ate a great meal, watched some College Fatball at a classy sports bar and had a relaxing night. The next morning we woke up early in anticipation of the Monterey Bay Aquarium. It was a world class place highlighted by a great white shark and sea and river otters playing around. After the aquarium we drove further south to Pebble Beach where we drove the famous 17 mile drive. It was hard to fathom the pace of life in a place with so much money, Pebble Beach, and Spy Glass Hill (US Open golf courses).

With a formidable drive ahead of us and lots to accomplish back at the boat we hit the road mid afternoon going North on the scenic HWY 1 to Oakland. It will be remembered as the most angelic drive of our lives. We stopped at several lookouts and beaches as well as the worlds largest hay bail maze.

Our hired hands Rick and Carey are now on the clock and we hope to get a test sail in tomorrow.


Pat and Stephen

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