Sunday, September 1
Well, Nicky …you’re not going on this trip. We left him to have his own vacation with The Jon Stewart family, Lucy and Amy and Blue!
We traveled I5 down to Gold Beach, Oregon for our first night. Along the way, as the temp dropped 12 degrees, we saw elk, beautiful rivers and Bridges.
Our first night was spent in the lovely Ireland’s Rustic Lodge where we had a “cabin” with a view. Of the Pacific Ocean. A quiet dinner at the local Saltwater Restaurant, a good night’s sleep and a walk to the beach and lighthouse made for a great start.
I was reminiscing about how nice this rustic lodge was compared to the cabin in the woods we had on our honeymoon in the Poconos! (It was cheap, what can I say!? You get what you pay for!). We walked into our dingy little room with the small bed covered in a tattered, smudged quilt. As I inspected the room, I discovered the moldy shower curtain was hiding a huge spider web inside! Eek!! Was the next word I spoke!
Our 2 mile romantic walk through the woods to the old spring led us to a mattress with the springs popping out of it!
We are planning to have lunch with a former Dondero student, Amanda Perna Melendrez and her lovely daughter in Trinidad, CA today! Route 101 is engulfed in fog as we drive. When there is a slight fog, I love the mystery and calm it invokes to the scenery! But presently we are experiencing intense fog and I wonder how much of it may be caused by the fires inland. Jon says there’s always fog in the redwoods!
We had lunch at a quaint little Seaside restaurant in Trinidad. It was great to catch up with Mandy and meet Malea.
Then…on to the Avenue of Giants! We stopped and walked into the woods a bit. The peace and quiet was palpable! The majestic of the huge redwoods coupled with the awesome quietness just calmed the spirit. It reminded me of the awesomeness and bigness of God, yet at the same time gentle and still. Psalm 46:10….”be still and know that I am God”.
The remainder of the drive took us through white knuckle bends and turns with vistas each one more beautiful than the next.
We arrived in Mendocino – so much different than what I imagined it to be. It’s a very small village on a peninsula with little cottagy homes, shops, galleries and boutiques in the small cottagy buildings.
Monday and Tuesday – September 2&3 – Mendocino
We spent the day browsing the galleries, little museums and shops, then went to the Coast on a cliff and watched the ocean ebb and flow. How relaxing and beautiful! Then spent sown time at the Big River.
After a delicious breakfast of fresh fruit and cheese blitzes, we wended our way down to Monterey. But, before leaving, we were able to visit the Mendocino Art Center with its adorable little characters welcoming us!
We drive through more winding roads, vineyards and redwoods. We stopped at the Greenwood Ridge Winery, and discovered the tasting room was built by Aaron Green, a mentee of Frank Lloyd Wright!
For lunch we stumbled upon a fantastic sandwich shop: Michael’s Sourdough in Santa Rosa. The sub style sourdough bun was so hot and crusty we shamefully each ate our whole sandwiches!
Wednesday and Thursday, September 4 & 5,
We arrived in Monterey late in the afternoon after bypassing San Francisco and all its traffic! Because there were two of us, we were able to drive in the express lane!!
This evening, we walked along Fisherman’s Wharf. The restaurants were hawking customers and luring them in with yummy tastes of Clam Chowder! The sea lions were barking loudly but I could only see ONE! I’ll HAVE to see more tomorrow.
We decided to have dinner at a lovely little Greek restaurant. We shared a Gyro dinner plate and it was delicious, and plenty of food!
Thursday was spent driving through the 17 miles of Pebble Beach Scenic Drive. What a beautiful area. We lazily drove through stopping along the way to take in the sites. The beach was beautiful, with lots of rocks and sea lions to entertain us. The homes and the sites were far more beautiful than the golf courses! We ended up having lunch at the Pebble Beach Hotel overlooking the famous golf course. What a relaxing day!
We could not visit Monterey without going to the Aquarium.
God’s creatures of the deep certainly are beautiful works of art!
Friday and Saturday, September 6 & 7,
We drove home on I5, foregoing the windy, scenic route for the fast interstate! We stopped in Mt. Shasta to spend the night. I love it when you drive and are looking for a mountain peak, then make the curve when you first catch a glimpse!
We had a burger at the local pub n grub – The Goat Tavern. The next morning we ate at the Black Bear Diner! What a cute little themed restaurant with huge yummy meals!!
Saturday night we spent in Eugene at the Inn at the 5th – recommended to us by a couple we met at the BnB in Mendocino (a movie producer from LA – Neil Machlis). It was very nice – a great way to unwind after a trip, and let Jim begin his Football season! I was able to shop at the sidewalk sales next door while he got his fill! The next morning finished our trip with the locals at breakfast at a cute little Studio One Cafe.