Thursday, 5 July 2007

Summer by the bay?

Having left Bakersfield with the temperature over 80 at 8.30 the thought of a day somewhere by the ocean was one of the major thoughts on my mind. Guess the other thought should have been "How do i get out of here?", easily found the cheap petrol i'd spotted yesterday ($2.959 per gallon) but from there simply had to drive around till i found a sign pointing to Hwy 158 West (my map not being quite detailed enough). Eventually stumbled upon it, very much an ordinary road going through farms (first fruit trees then cattle then apparently rice). Crossed under the major freeway to LA (The I5) and then it was like being back in Australia (think Benalla or somewhere out on the Newell), according to the sign no services for 70 miles at the next town Santa Margaqita. Could've sworn i was back in Australia, hot weather, dry plains and rough winding roads and only two cars (both flew past me doing the limit) in that hour or so. According to my map i was near the sea but surrounding undulating hills gave no hints. A short stint on the freeway to San Bernadino and then off as soon as i see the sea mentioned. A place called Morro Bay, for quite a while all i could see was a misty, fog covered outcrop i was to learn later that this was Morro Rock a volcanic 500 foot high rock at the entrance to the bay seperating it from the Pacific Ocean. But where had the warm, sunny seaside weather gone?, the car was showing 60 degrees now and it was now blowing a cool wind as well as that mist. Beautiful little beach village but hard to imagine it's ever that warm as all the hotels advertise fireplaces. Shame there is such a great beach, big waves and wide stretch of sand but no beach weather. Have never seen such big seagulls (at least 3 times as big as ours) or big (fat i guess) squirrels (they hang around the eateries helping themselves to food with a cuteness a rat could never match). Undoubted highlight are the sea otters playing in family groups off the shore (how well photos of them will come up is another matter). Great fish and chips but mystified why they come as pieces rather than as a fillet. July 4th fireworks tonight over the bay should be worth seeing tonight (no matter what i may think of over the top US patriotism this will be my second for the week, there was a great display half way through Sunday nights gig although at the time i remember wondering whether it'd be Howie or David to break out into a Jimi Hendrix style Star Spangled Banner - disappointingly neither did). Possibly there were fireworks last night but wasn't confident enough they weren't gunshots to go and look. Finally the cold is gone, unfortunately replaced by hideously chafed lips from too much sun and wind on the high mountains.

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