Monday, September 17, 2012

Best Rosh Hashanah Ever?

Monday Sept 17, 2012  Santa Cruz to Carmel Valley

Today was like 2 different days.  We started out riding with Joe and Gary after a delicious breakfast at a place in Santa Cruz.  By the way, breakfast requires sitting with like-minded cyclists on this ride. Some like to take their time getting to/ordering/eating breakfast. Others like to move it along. Today, the 4 of us moved it along, big time. I have to admit to a guilty pleasure today – French Toast. And bacon! Anyway, once we got going, it was cloudy and quite cool.  The first 30 miles or so went along roads that were winding through farm fields.  We saw strawberries, asparagus, avocado, kiwi, leaf lettuce, and artichoke plants.  At certain points you could actually smell the plants even before you saw them.

Who wants berries?

Still picked by hand.
After the SAG we ended up on a bike path that after 15 miles or so came out in Monterey. I know this bike path wore me (and Mark) out. It's weird how your energy comes and goes on a ride like this. It's not just day to day. It's hour to hour too. And it wasn't just us. It seemed to us (and I may be wrong here) others were dragging too. But, just as we turned the corner, the sun came out.  I, of course, claimed I had arranged the sun and timed it just so. The view of Monterey from the bike path lightened all our moods and we quickly turned our sights to finding the best spot for lunch.  Here's our friend Baltimore Mark just as we approached Monterey.  See how pretty the view is?

Mark and I found a place in Fisherman's Wharf to have a quiet lunch, just the two of us.  We ate outside, watched the busy harbour, watched the pelicans and seals, and kept an eye on our bikes too.  It was just what the doctor ordered on a 72 mile day. Clam chowder, and a wedge salad was shared between us. Very tasty. After eating we rode through the rest of Monterey, including Cannery Row, the inspiration for the Steinbeck novel "Cannery Row". Coincidence??
Me at Fisherman's Wharf, Monterey 
After Monterey, we followed a winding road along the shoreline until we reached the entrance to "17 mile drive". For those of you who have never been here, 17 Mile Drive is  a specially designated road around the peninsula and features outstanding seascapes and more. All I can say is WOW.  What spectacular views, and we are definitely coming back here to play golf.  I only just got warmed up today.  I was only able to buy one Pebble Beach logo'd item as it was all we could carry in our jerseys. We also saw some of the great courses in American golf including Spanish Bay, Spyglass Hill, and Cypress Point.
Me outside the clubhouse at Pebble Beach
Mark and I by the 250 yr old Cypress Tree

After exiting 17 mile drive at the Carmel gate, we climbed through the town of Carmel but we didn't stop.  I wanted to, but we still had 20 more miles in front of us.  I'm not sure I mentioned this, but we are definitely coming back here, so we will spend some time in Carmel as well.  As we were climbing (yes, climbing again) we passed this sign:

Is this a hint?

So now you know from whence the title of today's blog emanated.  A question for which I have no answer.

Oh, I forgot to mention that Mark went in the swimming pool here at the hotel.  This is noteworthy, because he refers to himself as a "candy ass" when it comes to water temperature. He claims he won't go into any body of water that isn't heated to a comfortable Jewish temperature (85 degrees+). He makes me keep our pool at 85 degrees and the pool here was only about 70 degrees.  I'm amazed at how my husband can ride across the country and ride down the coast of Oregon and California but doesn't want to swim in less than 85 degree water. Anyway, today was a complete case of sensory overload and now I am too tired to even type anymore. 8:36PM local time. Lights out!

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