Further along California’s coast. Beach resorts, Big Sur and the way to Las Vegas to prepare for this year’s hibernation.
Monterey, 9th August
San Francisco. At the Francisco Bay Inn – The motel we would even not recommend to our mothers-in-law. Prado is getting packed again. All car burglary addicted bad guys may observe how we leave. However, it has been a great opportunity to clean the car.
We head southwards. To these beautiful beach resorts the Americans converted into a kind of Disneyland for their summer holidays. Of course on the way a short visit to Silicon Valley. We have to know who makes all these strange stuff we finally find on our laptop’s screen. Well, we opt for the most beloved 1. The guy you can ask any questions you imagine. He always knows at least 1 answer. Sometimes even millions. Some are correct. Most not. But who cares. Incorrect answers simply convert into alternative 1s or fake facts. Hence, all is good. Politics prove it every day.
Hence, we visit Google. Dozens of houses, 1000s of people. Presumably most of them finding all these answers to our stupid questions, a few 1s just cycling between the buildings on colourful cycles and an astonishingly huge number just sitting outside, mostly munching Cuban food. Now we know it. Presumably we’ve even seen Mr. Google. Didn’t know he’s wearing a blue t-shirt’n’shorts.
We also have a look at the nearby visitor’s center of the NASA. We hope to find some good ideas on how to continue our trip once we’ve arrived in Ushuaia. Maybe something a little further.
Unfortunately, NASA’s exhibition isn’t too inspiring. It seems this famous institution needs some stimulation itself. Maybe some greatification will help.
We’ll need to look somewhere else for our future trip – probably the Chinese have some more enlightening offers.
Late afternoon in Santa Cruz – back to the Pacific. A place famous for its beach and the amusement park on the Boardwalk. Great place for real’n’wannabe kids.
The perfect place for world savers to fiercely fight aliens and …
… daddies learning kids how to become an excellent cowboy. A philosophy maybe more anchored with American citizens and not easily acceptable by others. Well, who knows.
The next morning back to reality. A short drive along Santa Cruz’ foggy seashore – to observe fishing pelicans.
Then we drive further south. To Monterey. The next beach resort. We pass Moss Landing – a look at all these otters in the harbour …
… and soon later we’re in Monterey. No sensations for all kind of kids. It’s more populated by sexy senior citizens who do not longer need any incredible adventures.
Some marine wildlife to marvel, …
… a visibly popular tourist pier, …
… a strange guy – probably not very conscious about the consequences of his electoral behaviour. Definitely he’s undeserving pity if he’ll have to pay much more for the next Mercedes.
A stroll thru Cannery Road. Nowadays converted into a tourists’ sleepery’n’eatery center cum shopping mall.
Finally some sea lions under Monterey’s pier and that’s it.
No, isn’t. There’s also Alvarado Street Brewery in Monterey. Great watering hole.
Barstow, 11th August
Further south: the road along the Big Sur. This famous journey on the Highway 1 along one of the most picturesque coastlines in California, wild, lonely, still a bit of adventure. And the road: narrow, winding, steep and only open since last week. Thus, must be great. It all starts with a drive along Monterey’s foggy seashore.
We move on leaving out the famous 17-Mile-Drive to Carmel-By-the-Sea. Cannot understand why they ask 10$ just for a few km along the coast.
We arrive in Carmel-By-the-Sea. Probably the most fashionable’n’expensive place all along the Pacific coast.
Wanna spend 1000$ for a non-serviced campsite or Motel 6? – Go to Carmel-By-the-Sea, you’ll get it – should there be any vacancies.
Nevertheless, the white beach is definitely a dog lover’s paradise.
Then we enter Highway 1. The road along Big Sur. We’re slightly astonished about the traffic. It’s a kind of continuous, slowly moving traffic jam. In both directions. So far lonely, adventurous roads in California.
Initially we’ve planned to visit the Point Lobos State Park. Unfortunately, all parking is full, cars along the road for kilometres. Ok. It’s just the beginning of Big Sur. Further south it might be better.
The coastline is fantastic.
The famous Bixby Creek Bridge. Despite all incredible dangers quite some visitors.
The road high above the sea, …
… then back to sea level, …
… some secluded beaches, …
… and the lower cliffs at Big Sur’s southern end. By far not as gorgeous as in the north.
We pass the areas where last year they had huge landslides. The reason for closing the highway.
A stop at Piedras Blancas. The ultimate opportunity to see elephant seals. Ugly guys. And of course, we’re not the only 1s to have a look at them.
In the evening in Morro Bay. Despite its nice fishing harbour and its eponymous rock a rather uncool place with the wreck of an industrial complex at its north beach.
The next morning – end of beach life. We head eastwards. To Las Vegas. After a few km a considerable change: absolutely dry landscape and temperature rising to 40° – Celsius, not Fahrenheit.
Some huge windparks and solar energy plants on the side – what else should they do with the land.
Barstow: an absolutely non-descript stop for the night. Maybe except the Firehouse Italian Eatery. Well, maybe not because of the quality of food – but for its incredible fire department themed interior.
Las Vegas, 14th August
The next morning we head on. Thru the Mojave Desert, …
… on the roadside some signs of driver’s dreams.
More solar energy plants on the road side. At least in California. In Nevada they’re replaced by casinos. Anyway, probably these solar energy plants will be converted in coal-fired power stations in the framework of the current Make-America-Great-Again Program. Could be as a preparation of the 2nd term of the present administration. As far as we’re informed Make-America-Even-Hotter may be Uncle Don’s new slogan for the next election campaign. Cool isn’t it?
Then we approach Las Vegas. Now 45° (Celsius). Incredible buildings along the highway. Some beautiful architecture, some simply monsters of bad taste.
Las Vegas: as usual, just slightly higher temperatures. Great interiors of the palaces and even greater monuments of past’n’present emperors.
A last IPA in our all-beloved watering hole high above The Strip …
Laufaburg, 15th August
… and the next day we enjoy Condor’s gourmet dinner on our 12h incredibly comfortable flight back to Swizzyland …
… to have a beer in our all-preferred watering hole in Laufaburg: the Hähnle.
Well, that’s it.
By the way, something we still have to publish.
Everybody knows what an incredible diversity is available in American supermarkets. So much more than in Europe, or elsewhere in the world. Maybe with the exception of China.
Just have a look at these long shelves with 100 000 of different products. This especially applies to deep-frozen convienience foodies – you know this stuff you just put in the microwave – and the all-American gourmet dinner is ready.
But also to cheese: basically you get Gouda and Swiss. And you get it mixed: 10% Gouda’n’90% Swiss, 20% Gouda’n’80% Swiss, 30% Gouda’n’70% Swiss, etc. Great selection.
But there are also products you would not find in any other corner of the world. How great. E.g. wine in cans. We just have it in bottles – what a shame.
Just remains the question: who the hell would buy this delicious stuff – outside America?
Maybe that’s the reason for the external trade deficit – and not questions of unfair taxes.
And should it be too exhausting for you to put these goodies in your micro-wave, you can also get them ready made – just around the corner in your all beloved fast-food chain.
Well, that’s it for now. Definitely. That’s it for next week, next month and this year. It’s time for early hibernation.
Stop your jealousy, feel pity with us until we’ll move on next year.
Remains the question about the itinerary. We still don’t know if we can support some more USA – or if we’ll head immediately to the better side of the great Mexican-Friendship-Wall.