Saturday, June 5, 2010

Pristine Coastline - Big Sur to San Francisco (May 25-27)

So it has been over a week since our last blog post and we have a lot of catching up to do!! We didn’t realise how hard it would be trying to keep this updated! Our days are full and it seems we have prioritised local activities and spending time with locals over blog writing!! Yeah that’s right, who wouldn’t!!? But we know how many of you anticipate our posts (without sounding big headed) and so we will keep plugging away at it!!

Big Sur to Sanfrancisco – nothing short of spectacular! Apart from the fact that it rained for 2 out of the 3 days of this journey, by the end of the 2nd day the clouds had dissipated and we were soaking up the rays once again. The drive along the coast was just stunning – it reminded of us of driving the Great Ocean Road, but beautiful in it’s own way, majestic scenes around every corner. We stayed in the Big Sur State Park, a gorgeous camping spot and it was our first opportunity we had to cook breakfast from the back of our van – French toast with ketchup! The bread containing sugar was not so flash. We have discovered that the Americans put sugar/high fructose corn syrup in almost everything – YUCK!! The squirrels seemed to enjoy the French toast though, having the courage to eat out of our hands!! lol

We visited the largest Sea Lion colony we have ever seen!! A kilometre long beach jam packed with elephant seals laying side by side….we were quite amused over some of the males fighting over the ladies while they happily basked in the sun (well that was our theory). Another amazing sight. The squirrels at the seal colony were even more tame than Big Sur, venturing onto your lap even though we didn’t have any food to give them.

We spent one night in Monterey where we ate really good seafood on the Fisherman’s Warf– the biggest scallops we have ever seen! We also tried clam chowder for the first time (this area is famous for it) which was incredible! We visited the Monterey Aquarium, one of the largest in the world. We were impressed with their efforts toward conserving our oceans/planet and the sea life we saw was just out of this world, especially the jelly fish! All we can say is wait until you see the pics! If you are in the California area the Aquarium definitely needs to be on your to-do-list.

We arrived in Santa Cruz in the afternoon and strolled the famous Boardwalk – not too exciting and we were surprised that everything was closing at 5pm! In the evening, we hadn’t yet found a place to park the van so we decided to head out of town and see if we could find a campground. On our way out of town, from a distance we saw what we thought was an RV park so we drove closer only to discover that it was an RV storage facility! DOH! We had a chuckle to ourselves and we were about to drive out of town when we discovered a deserted and unused parking lot in a secluded area….we were both so tired and just figured if we parked here for the night and left early we wouldn’t bother anyone. So that’s what we did! A funny story while we were parked here: there were very few cars that drove past us, but one that did made a point of pulling up right alongside our van!! We thought to ourselves “shit, what do they want!!”…then after about 30 secs of them parked there we saw a flash go off!! They then drove around to the other side of the van and we saw a flash go off again!! LOL all they wanted was to take pics of the van!

Before making our way to San Francisco we decided to take some time out at a small coastal town called Half Moon Bay. We finally got to put our feet in the sand and had some fun regressing to being kids again! It was the first time since my (sal) hip surgery that I’ve been able to jump and it was such an exhilarating feeling! There was a time not so long ago when I wondered if I was ever going to be free of pain and on this day I finally believed that I might actually be!

Taking time out was exactly what we needed…..we both felt more relaxed than we have in a very long time!


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