Thursday, October 27, 2016

Day Two: Bakersfield to Willits

As the sun rises (somewhere, but not here) and the clouds remain low, day two arrives on our journey. In the terribly beautiful area of Bakersfield, California we set out to continue along the I5, northbound. You may notice we parked at our hotel in the...wait I'll zoom in:

There it is:
area. Yes, we parked there. For a couple reasons. One, this $*%hole decided to park directly into two spaces right in front of the hotel and not leave his car info when he checked in, in order to remain an anonymous $*%hole to the annoyed security guard out front. Because of this, and our rather conspicuous loaded vehicle, he urged us to park in the safely-lit-and-guarded front porch overnight.

And on that happy note...the next morning we started driving on the most spectacular roadway in all of the US.

With views to fight over.

And really exciting landmarks to visit that definitely don't result in you pretending to be at the helm of a starship.

After about a bazillion hours of the amazing part of our trip, we made it to the dull, green, vine-filled Napa Valley, California. Bear with me while I try to make this sound more interesting than that unbeatable I5 stretch.

Wine train! Oh it's now full on raining by the way.

My mom: "Those look like they're from Lord of the Rings." But personally my first thought was more along the lines of "Cousin of Whomping Willow."

As we pulled into the Caymus Vineyards (owned by a friend of a friend or something) the courtesy valet dudes warily eyed our car and asked haltingly, "You don't, um, happen to have a...reservation?" Hm, think those 'poor student' hangers in the back window hinted that, or was it the funny looking rooftop carrier? Or possibly my under-$100,000-car?

Thankfully we didn't need a reservation to just snoop around, so we did just that. It felt very hoity-toity to me in my purple sneakers and flowery skirt and bright teal purse. They could have smelled the upper atmosphere with those noses. (I exaggerate: they were nice, but they could also definitely tell we were not belonging.)

We browsed, but when no price tags were visible, quickly changed our tactic to chat with the cashier and then leave before they realized we awkwardly came in and didn't leave with a bottle (or six) of wine.

I said the magic word and gates opened to let us leave.

And on our way to St Helena's, this monstrosity appeared on the side of the road. I'm still processing.

My turn for the flattering food photo. Although it also goes well with my photo-series Pictures of Leah Mid-Eating Things. This was at a delicious cafe in Ukiah.

Then we reached the edge of the world.

And around 6pm we decided to stop in Willits for the night.

about 450 miles I think.

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