Woke up early Saturday morning courtesy of my deranged biological clock. Looked at the laundry basket and felt no love. Checked email, recognized my restlessness for what it was, got dressed, got in the truck and started driving.
Drove up 101 up through Santa Rosa (where previous experience reminded me to top up the gas tank and use a rest room) and took the River Road (116 West) exit. I knew it would be a pretty drive along the Russian River from previous jaunts to the June Crown sites in Duncans Mills. Besides, some wags had decided to revive the Burma Shave signs
along that route and they're kind of amusing. Stopped at a farm stand, bought cherries, Gravenstein apples
, cukes and a kabocha (Japanese pumpkin).
Picked up Highway 1 where 116 spills out near Jenner and turned north, admiring the misty glimpses of the Pacific as I navigated around the iconic turns that show up in commercials for sports cars. Even in a light pick up it's kinda fun, but you can't get distracted by the view when you've got "15 mph We Really Mean It" signs and madmen and women coming up the opposite lane on road bikes on pure will and stubbornness.
And on the northbound run, it's kind of hard to pull over and take pictures - it's just plain the wrong side of the road and there are an awful lot of blind curves. So I didn't stop on 1 until I saw the turn off for the lighthouse at Point Arena.
Definitely a black-and-white kind of day, with mist and a chilly breeze.
I took this one through my windshield during a hasty pullover into a turnout. I love these rows of looming trees and saw it coming in time that it just worked out. http://www.flickr.com/photos/70104978@N00/sets/72157627356337507/
Stopped when I got to Fort Bragg, my object being to get to somewhere I'd never been. Of course the name of the place sasha_khan
had mentioned as being good had gone clean out of my head. I don't even want to know if I missed it by only a block. I'd been in the truck for hours at that point. I pulled up a side street, parked and began scoping out the neighborhood for a quick lunch and restroom. But first I had to browse a couple of book stores. Managed to put down the battered first American edition of Little Dorrit
and make a clean getaway from one shop, but scored a clean, cheap paperback copy of Mark Twain's Following the Equator
and a recommendation for a cheap, quick lunch at the second. I walked into Bernillo's Pizza a couple doors down, ordered a slice. "Pepperoni's up right now," I was informed, so pepperoni it was, and a can of Pepsi which I couldn't finish because I don't drink soda very often any more. Bathroom was clean, the couple behind the counter were friendly, and while the crust was too thick to be true NY pizza, it hit the spot.
Took a look through a bead shop, a craft coop which was closing for business (bought a hand knit scarf for my work-mate who is leaving in a month for a new home in Tennessee), and hit a place on the way out of town which sold overpriced sea glass jewelry.
Back down Highway 1 past Mendocino, then I cut east on Highway 128, which I knew would put me back on 101 at Cloverdale for a less challenging homeward drive. 128 winds through an impressive coastal redwood grove for about 10 miles before the country opens up into vineyards and ranches.
Stopped briefly in Petaluma to top up on gas and use a rest room, then homeward.
For the record, I did do the laundry. This morning.