Chico - A Reunion with Friends
Having cleared the Sierras and the snow, we arrived safely at the home of our friends, Mark and Shirley, in Chico. In two days there, we cooked for one another, visited the Sacramento Valley National Wildlife Preserve and the Trappist monastery and vineyard of New Clairveaux and took in the Chico farmers' market on a rainy Saturday morning. Yes! A farmers' market in January! A lovely experience, even in a steady rain. One of many reasons to love California. We scored a delicious pummelo as well as some locally-made pomegranate jam.
Speaking of rain, it began raining on our second full day in Chico and hardly let up until our last day in Point Reyes, a week later. The drought in northern California is, I believe, officially over.
(A click on any photo enlarges the photo. Your Back arrow brings you back to the journal, I think.)
|Shirley and Mark were excellent hosts to weary travelers.|
Mark took a break from being a good host and cleaned our clocks in a game of Catan Saturday evening. I'm going to have to practice for a rematch with my grandson, Aidan, when we return home.
I'll tell the rest of the story of our stay in Chico in photos.
|Sacramento Valley Wildlife Preserve|
|Not such a good bird photographer, but I do well with landscapes.|
|On the road outside Chico|
|On the road, evidence of the drought's end|
|My one keeper bird photo|
On To Point Reyes and Another Good Friend
We drove four hours to Point Reyes in a steady rain. My friend, John, emailed to tell me that we were in the midst of a major storm hitting the west coast. It had never occurred to either Carol or me because what was falling wasn't white stuff. We arrived in the middle of a five-day span when the area received ten inches of rain.
|Carol and Elisabeth, friends since high school|
We were psyched to hear live music, but it wasn't to happen. We thought we had left hazardous road conditions behind at the Donner Pass, but on the dark roads into town I drove the RAV4 right into eighteen inches of water. I carefully got us out of the mess, thinking all the time of cars swept off roads in such situations. We drove back to Elisabeth's, the evening's entertainment complete.
We spent a good week with Elisabeth, rain notwithstanding. Carol and Elisabeth spent hours reminiscing over their Visitation Academy year books. Elisabeth invited four friends to dinner one evening, a very good time. We managed a few hikes and investigated the shops of Point Reyes Station. On our last full day, the sun broke through brilliantly.
Here it all is in photos. First, In and around Pt. Reyes Station:
|A Treasure of a Book Store|
|Lots of Good Stuff To Be Had|
|On the edge of town|
|Inside the barn|
|Cow's-eye View of the world|
|Our Lady of the Harbor|
|The home of Philip K. Dick's widow. He wrote "The Man in the High Castle" here.|
|After the rain, a trail detour|
|The Pacific Ocean|
|An optimistic coyote? He didn't seem to cause much concern for the herd.|
|At Tomales Point, we hiked among herds of Tule elk.|
|The elk were not too concerned about us.|
|You lookin' at me?|
The morning after the rainbow, we said good-bye to Elisabeth and headed for San Luis Obispo.