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Showing posts with the label tripping

Dancing in the Street

On Sunday, the Husband and I attended the Chicken Festival in San Juan Bautista. Bwak, bwak, bwak. The last event being 10 years go, it celebrates the wild chickens that roam the California mission city. The flock was thinned out a few years ago, but they are slowly coming back.

We didn't see any of the fowl, but we did see a young local dance troupe called the Grupo Folklorico "Carisma Mexicano" who performed traditional Mexican folk dances that incorporate ballet techniques.  The girls and boys were charming and delightful as they stepped and swirled in a rather tight spot on the narrow street among the vendors' booths.








Today is Our World Tuesday, where I'm participating. Here's the link. Grazie, OWT administrators.



Riding Public Transportation

It has been 15 years since The Husband and I moved out of the San Francisco Bay Area, which, depending on where we want to go, a 30-minute to two hour-or-so drive away. Lately we have been wandering a bit further into the Bay Area maze. Molly the Cat probably wonders what has gotten into us. She, after all, gets stuck indoors when the humans are at play.

The increased number of offensive drivers on the freeway has made driving no longer fun, so we've been trying out BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) to get beyond San Jose. The nearest BART station is about an hour's drive to the north of us. It's not too much of a white-knuckle drive to get there.

Right now the cost for our tickets is equivalent to about a tank of gas. Totally worth it. No fuss, no stress.  Looking out the train window as we headed east away from Oakland, I watched cars on the highway swish frantically pass each other.

In a few months I'll turn 65 and be eligible for the senior discount. Hurrah!


A lot of…

Riding Among the Trees

Recently the Husband and I found a not-so-often-traveled road that skirted the northern side of a nearby mountain. Entry to the road is in very deep shade. We came across it years ago, but we backed out after a few feet because the road looked like it would be an unpaved, pitted one. We didn't think Eliza, our 1993 metal steed, would fare well on it. I don't know why we felt confident that an older Eliza wouldn't complain a couple of weeks ago.


The road had not a hole to carefully maneuver over or around. The road reminded me of the fire and logging roads in deep forests. Well, duh, we were going through a second or third generation growth redwood forest. It was beautiful in there.

I'm so grateful that we could travel through the forest by car since my knees and right ankle complain after several blocks of walking. How else would I have seen this living creature of a tree?




If it's Sunday, it must be time for All Seasons, a weekly meme hosted by Jesh at Artworks f…

A Pleasant Drive to the Pet Store

I took this photo a few days ago. This is part of Pajaro Valley, east of Watsonville, in Santa Cruz County. Do the mountains look far away? Because they really are.  The Husband and I drive through this valley on our way to and from Freedom where we buy Molly the Cat's food.

It's about an hour round drive, but so worth the peace of mind we get as we drive the back roads of the valley and along the windy low mountain pass highway to San Benito County where we live. Once through the pass, we drive through San Juan Valley to our town of Hollister, which is in the tail end of the Santa Clara valley. As a kid, I heard people say we live in Hollister Valley or San Benito Valley. These days I read about our town nestled in a small valley, so I wonder if our valley has a formal name, now forgotten. That's something to look up one day.


I'm linking up with All Seasons, a weekly meme hosted by Jesh at Artworks from Jesh St.G. Click here to check out Jesh and her meme. For the pa…

Tripping Solo

Mmmmm. I'm sipping a mocha with a big splash of Kahlua as I tippy tap my thoughts on the keyboard. Mmmmmm.

Today's adventure was a solo trip in the rain to Freedom for food for Molly the Cat. She ate the last acceptable can of victuals yesterday morning and the final crumbs of the dried food that she deems edible. Hence it was necessary to take the 90-minute round trip drive over the hill and through the pass today. Although the Husband is feeling better, he still felt spaced out with the virus to ride shotgun.

I can't recall the last time I drove by myself a far distance. Definitely years. What can I say? A long time ago, a bicycle repair guy who tuned up our beach cruisers asked us, "Do you do everything together?"  After which he told us that each of our rear wheels had a bent spoke in the same spot.

I was in a solitary frame of mind this morning so I didn't feel at all anxious, even when it began to rain and the windshield wipers did more smudging at firs…

The Ilocano Tribe

It's the letter I at ABC Wednesday. My contribution is an edited post that I originally published on April 10, 2013. To check out ABCW posts from bloggers around the world, please click here. Thanks ABCW Team! In 1985, I spent several days camping in Havasu Canyon with the First Husband-to-be. Havasu Canyon, known for its gorgeous waterfalls that run down to the Colorado River, lies just outside of the western border of the Grand Canyon National Park. We stayed at the Havasu campground on the Havasupai Indian Reservation run by the Havasupai Tribe. (I have no idea if that's how it is today.)

Havasupai means people of the green blue water. And, yes, the pools of water were a spectacular green blue color when we were there.

To get to the campground back then, you either flew in on a helicopter or hiked the winding 10-mile trail down to the canyon floor.

I was (and still am) a slow walker, so the First Husband-to-be got to the campground office before me. The reservation was und…

The London Bridge

London Bridge is falling down,
falling down, falling down.
London Bridge is falling down.
My Fair Lady. In first grade, we sang this Mother Goose rhyme as we marched under an arch formed by the joined hands of two kids. The hands came down on "My Fair Lady" and the two kids would then rock the captured kid between their locked hands, as we sang a verse about taking the key and locking the kid up. When that verse was over, either the captured kid chose a side and stood behind that kid or took that kid's place, after which, we marched and sang the rhyme again.

I don't remember what the point of the game was. For that matter, what the rhyme was all about. After three or four rounds, I would look longingly at the playground, even willing to climb up the jungle gym. And, that I disliked to do.

I didn't become curious about the London Bridge until 1975 when I learned that a rich American had bought the bridge and reconstructed it brick by brick on Lake Havasu in Arizona…

Friday's Hunt v2.10

The cues for this week are: 1) Starts with J   2) Week's Favorite   3) Surprise

J is for jaunt, which is what the Husband and I took last Saturday. We went over hills and down dales, around curves and straightways, and along creeks and through forests. Our goal was to purchase tomatoes at the u-pick-your-own organic farm in Santa Cruz County.

It took longer to get there than to pick the nearly 50 pounds of tomatoes, of which most are now in the freezer waiting their turn to be part of some delicious recipe in the winter and spring. I simply wash the tomatoes, let them dry, pack them in bags, and freeze them. When it's time to use them, I put them straight in the pot to melt into the other ingredients. No fuss, no muss.

That said, you would think my favorite photo this week would be of the tomatoes, the tomato fields, or the Husband frolicking through the fields picking tomatoes. Nope. I was to busy plucking the juicy fruit myself to think of clicking away.

My favorite photo t…

Gutsy Guys at Work

I had a few G thoughts to write about for ABC Wednesday this week. Alas, the day comes, and those ideas are lifeless. So, for today, I give you a photo of construction guys. They're working merely feet from the highway. Their job is one that requires a lot of guts.

To check out this week's ABCW participants, please click here.

The Season of Plenty

The other day, the Husband and I drove around Pajaro Valley in Santa Cruz County (next door to our county) just because we felt like it. The fertile Pajaro Valley has fields full of strawberries, cages full of raspberries and blackberries, and still a few orchards full of apples.

We stopped at Gizdich Ranch, which is well-known for its apple juice and homemade apple and berry pies. You can also pick your own apples and various types of berries, if you want.  Our mission. My mission (the Husband was a captive audience) was to purchase hollyhock seeds. Unfortunately none were to be had yet. But, we did come away with four cobs of corn for a dollar and a look at a bunch of fancy buggy-looking Bugatti's that one of the guys said were each worth $2 million+.

The Bugatti guys (5 or 6 of them) caused a traffic jam at the ranch. Not because they couldn't find parking spots, from what I saw, but because the drivers and passengers stood in the path of us, drivers, trying to find parkin…

Eden Hills Friday's Hunt

This week's topics for Friday's Hunt, hosted by Teresa of Eden Hills are:
1.  Starts with D  2. Week's Favorite  3. Summer or Winter

My favorite photo captures the other two topics, too. It shows the dense fog coming over the ridge, which happens on many late summer afternoons. It's a good thing. Otherwise, we'd be burning up. I can't stand hot temperatures.

The photo also shows the denseness of commute traffic in my neck of the woods. Yes, yes. it's not really thick compared to what goes on in cities. Believe me, in my rural area, people go crazy when the line of traffic is this long at the signal light for which we're stopping.





Please click here to check out the other participants in Friday's Hunt. The meme is open until Sunday evening, if you'd like to join in.


The One-of-a-Kind Windmill in Salinas Valley

Back in March, the Husband and I stumbled upon an amazing landmark in Salinas, California, of which I think many people in our area are unaware. Standing on top of a historic mill on the Harden Estate in North Salinas was a Victorian mechanical wonder known as the Challenge Double Header Wind Engine. It's considered the only surviving windmill of its kind.


Wowza!

The Challenge Double Header Wind Engine was built in 1892 by Salinas Valley pioneer grain farmer and dairyman Duncan McKinnon. Back then, many called the machine's design  a "masterpiece in Victorian engineering". The wind engine has two 30-foot wind wheels that rotate in opposite directions. It also has two smaller wheels which rotate the wind engine so that it faces the wind.

McKinnon decided to build the wind engine after seeing an advertisement. The man had vision. He used the wind engine to power his mill, a water pump, blacksmith shop, and carpentry shop. One source says that the wind engine was used…

Vegas

Vegas as in Las Vegas. The fertile lowlands of a city that's in southern Nevada. Yes, fertile lowlands is the English translation of the Spanish plural las vegas. Hmmm, could that be why you can find quite a lot of golf courses is Vegas?

Some might say that the fertile lowlands refer to something other than terrain. But, I'm not going there.


I've been to Vegas four times. The first time was in 1975 when I went cross-country with a college friend. The Strip wasn't a big deal yet and Downtown Vegas was so-so, but then I was still 20 so what was the use of being there. The second time was another quick stop as the first, late dear Husband and I were driving back from our first big camping trip together. Again, yawwwwn. We had after all spent a week down in a canyon by the Colorado River.


In the late 1990s, the Husband and I spent a few days in Vegas and by then the Strip was a very big surreal deal. The photos are from that trip. We gambled our nickels away at the variou…

Taking a Trip to Buy Cat Food and Seeing Amazing Clouds

The Husband and I drove over to the coast this afternoon to buy food for Molly the Cat. It was something neither of us wanted to do, but Molly ate her last can of food this morning. Yes, we have a very particular cat. She would rather go hungry then eat something that doesn't taste or smell good to her. But, Molly the Cat is not the story today.


The clouds are the story. They were swimming, running, tumbling, dancing, and singing across the perfect blue sky. You see, it rained last night. Hallelujah! It rained throughout the night. Whooo-hooo! And it rained some this morning. Yippee!  


All that wonderful rain left us with clear blue skies and whipped-cream like clouds. And, because the Husband was driving, I took photos. I was good at first, sitting primly (I heard that snort of a laugh) in my seat shooting photos through the passenger window and the windshield. 


Before I knew it, I was leaning out the window. The door was locked. Every now and then I held the camera over the t…

Niles Canyon Railway

Toot! Toot! Allllll Abooooarrrrrrrrd!

Last year, the Husband and I took a ride on the Niles Canyon Railway, a living museum that runs through the gorgeous Niles Canyon in the San Francisco Bay Area. We rode in historic train cars pulled by a vintage diesel engine. It was about a 90-minute round trip between two small historic towns, Niles (which is now part of Fremont) and Sunol (which is off of Highway 680).


The Niles Canyon Railway is operated by volunteer conductors and engineers. They're part of the Pacific Locomotive Association, a non-profit organization. The volunteers in this group rebuilt the line that was once part of the transcontinental railroad. The volunteers continue to obtain and rebuild train cars. Near the Sunol depot is the train yard where the cars are stored and worked.  One of the association's objectives is to provide the public with a sense of what riding trains was like in small communities throughout the United States once upon a time.


You can sit eit…