The month of many travels concluded with a long weekend spent driving with Audrey from the Bay Area back to LA along the coast.
Thursday July 14
After working in Berkeley I picked Audrey up at Oakland airport and we then headed to Ma and Pa’s for the evening. The night concluded with a viewing of photos of young Ryan in an awesome Superman outfit, and questionable shots of a younger Skipper in a speedo.
Friday July 15
After bacon at the Hick’ry Pit in Walnut Creek we visited the Lindsay Wildlife Museum, because girls like to see cute animals and go “Awwwwww!” The museum’s eagle was calling, the hawks were hawking, and the owls were owling. Following that excursion we headed to Moss Beach under amazingly non-foggy skies to meet Audrey’s best friend Krissy, who is now a docent at the state beach across the street from her home and thus empowered to yell at anyone who gets too close to the seals. She gave us the beach tour, then took us on a walk that ended at a restaurant with amazing views and awesome Pisco Sours – everything after the second drink is a bit of a blur.
Saturday July 16
The next morning Audrey and Krissy went stand-up paddle boarding in Half Moon Bay while Krissy’s husband and I went kayaking. I got the sleek red kayak with flames on it ’cause it was super awesome, and jetted off to chase baby seagulls, loons, and other critters for the next two hours. Following that adventure we met JB at his new place, which somehow has a 1500 year old redwood in the middle of it. He gave us a tour in the back of a Polaris ATV before we had to drive down to Carmel for the evening. Audrey took me to a fancy restaurant with beautiful gardens for dinner, where I ordered a meal of buffalo chicken strips in an effort to keep things classy.
Sunday July 17
The trip through Big Sur involved many stops, including a visit to the Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park where we were visited by five red-headed acorn woodpeckers. Further down the road we stopped in Piedras Blancas to see the elephant seals, made a visit to Hearst Castle (although sadly it was too late for a tour), then had the following encounter further south on Highway 1:
Me: “Why are all of those cars stopped ahead? What are they looking at?”
Me: “There are zebras on the top of that hill.”
Audrey (not wearing her glasses): “C’mon! Tell me what it is, really?”
As it turned out, the last remnants of William Randolph Hearst’s private menagerie now roam the Hearst ranch, and it was indeed a herd of zebras grazing by the road. Definitely not something you expect to see on the California Coast, and yet another reason why road trips are such awesome endeavors.
Audrey being pretty in Piedras Blancas.