My sister and both of our dogs woke up very early, donned our masks and ventured forth. Our goal for the day was San Diego to Berkeley without rush hour traffic and only a rest stop or two for gas and a dog-walk. We made it, only to choke on the air from the fires and the 98 degree heat. As we arrived ahead of schedule we were able to visit with another sister’s grandsons and daughter. A delightful end to a long drive.
The next morning we made room for our sister from Berkeley and headed North, this time to Fort Bragg and Mendocino. Unfortunately our route went through Santa Rosa and all the fumes from the Glass Fire which was devastating wine country. We were prepared to deal with the Corona Virus but not this. Our throats, eyes and chest were sore but only until we got to the coast. I can’t imagine the weeks of suffering all those in the area are experiencing.
We stopped at a winery that was only open for sales but also had a dog run and bathrooms. It was certainly worth the price of a bottle. We enjoyed the towering Redwoods but found the road to be quite twisty and a bit stressful for the driver.
Coming from southern California we were most impressed with all the mask wearers. Everyone had them on: at the gas stations, on sidewalks, on bikes, in all stores and even while walking outside on hiking trails!
The hotel was surprisingly antiseptic. The check in was through a glass window with sanitizer everywhere. We were told that there would be no maid service during our stay but we could arrange to get towels, sheets or whatever at the front desk if needed. We had a view of the somewhat wild coast with big waves, rocks and trails leading to the beach. Refreshing. Recovering. Thankful.
During our mini-vacation we walked the beaches including the famous glass beach (only saw small green pieces and a few amber), we took the Skunk Train (with the dogs) on a trip through the Redwoods and we explored both small towns. Most stores were open as were dining venues that could serve outdoors. We ate some great pizzas and drank some good beer and wine.
On our return we were able to hike trails in the Hendy Woods State Park although this was the first place where dogs were not welcomed. Luckily the trails was short so we took turns watching them.
While this was a great break from our limited daily routine back home I miss the faraway adventures…like most of you I’m still dreaming!