Sunday 3.29.15

Winding down from a trip. I tagged along to California last week to perform Sherpa duties. Let me just say that getting the F out of Wisconsin for a week and enjoying 80 plus degree temps was great. When we got back to Chicago Friday night it was twenty-fucking-three-degrees. Ouch.

We started out in South San Francisco when we arrived. The next day I called my cousin, Rick, and suggested that we would interrupt his family’s day off. Being the easy-going guy that he is, he promised not to call the police. We raced the rental down near San Jose to Rick’s compound.

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We were graciously welcomed by a couple of wanting-to-play-ball dogs. I rang the doorbell and a fog horn went off. You need this in the Bay area. We walked in and got re-acquainted and then Rick gave us the tour. What had started off as a dinky little home is now over twice the size thanks to Rick’s engineering.

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There were hidden treasures out back…

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We completely mooched lunch… I learned about Chicken and Waffles. Pictures were taken to prove life and we headed to Santa Cruz.

We met Paul and his daughter, Kim, when we were on a trip to Greece in 2010. We (my wife mostly) stayed in touch. Since we were in the general area we arranged to visit Kim and her husband, Bill, at their home. We checked out some tall redwoods then scouted out the beach area, watched a few surfers and ate dinner. The next morning, Bill had stoked up the fireplace and we ate breakfast and chatted before leaving later in the morning.

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We took the road that Kim warned us not to take to get over to the coast highway near Davenport, CA. It was quite twisty and turny up and down some steep hills. I felt like when Indiana Jones commented on how his Dad could not tackle the rats under Venice as I recalled how my Dad sometimes has motion sickness while riding in a car. I made it.

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We headed north to Half Moon Bay to visit a guy who went to UW with my wife. They have remained friends over the years. This is the man who founded ID Software and is responsible for many individuals not getting their homework assignments done over the years. (That’s a guess)

We ate, then combed the beach for sea glass (broken glass in the ocean that is worn smooth and then washed ashore in itty bitty pieces) then said goodbye and headed to Tiburon.

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On the way, we crossed the Golden Gate Bridge and I took a shaky picture…

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Monday morning we headed for Muir Woods. We had not eaten breakfast yet so we grabbed a couple of scones and a drink at the park cafe. I remembered watching Ken Burn’s National Parks series and recalled stories about how John Muir would go into the woods with a few crackers in his pocket and survive. I figured I could do it on a scone. About 50 feet into the park, there was a trail to our right that went uphill. “Should we take this path?” “Sure, why not?”

Well, it is about 2 miles long, all uphill. Some parts are smooth as a sidewalk, others are piles of roots and downed trees to try to get across. Once you get to the top, you do the whole thing in reverse to get back down. Yeah, someone’s “Fitbit” went off pretty early that day.

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After this adventure, it was off to Sacramento. Part two coming soon.

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