Monday, August 18, 2008

Mark's Favorite Out-West Memories III

And one last picture of "Schultz-Goat Cove" We loved it so much, we loitered on the beach until dusk...then hustled up the cliff and away for...

our first "scary drive". It was a winding road hugging the cliff with a speed bump to "prevent" us from going over the edge. Darkness was nearing, but not quite enough of it to block our view of the precipice. We were so high that a garden-variety swerve would have given us plenty of time for regret and recrimination, maybe an abbreviated argument, or a few Our Fathers before we hit bottom. The west, it turns out has lots of these drives. Cathy spent much of this particular drive gripping the handhold above her window (as if it would help) and making lots of squeaky noises whenever we cornered.

One of my favorite experiences was staying with David and Elena Heil, who generously shared their home with us when we were in Napa. Wonderful folks who love history and traveling.

And Yosemite. It is really lovely. High, soaring sheer-faced white mountains framed with conifers. Lots of people though.

One of the people was really interesting. This guy was sitting along the trail setting up rows of rocks balanced on their edges and points on top of other rocks. No tricks, just patience and grea balance. His son was along, trying to figure out the art. Really cool, I thought, but then I do have that eye for the odd.

A row of balanced stones.

OK. This is out of order. But it's easy to confuse redwoods and sequoias. These are redwoods, which we saw at San Francisco. They soar. The trunks are bigger than almost any tree you've seen. But not "out-of-all-proportion" thick. You really don't see how high they are from the ground. We're like ants, trying to appreciate the tallest trees in the world.

For "out-of-all-proportion"'s sequoias. They're mind-boggling. Not crazy-tall. But wide as a barn.


fred said...

Mark and cathy, it's great reading about your amazing trip and Mark's favorite places out west. In my current conditionm, I'm not too nimble on the computer, but this was great reading.

teresa anthony said...

Cathy's squeaky noises and handlebar holding... just another oddity in the McDonnell women co-piloting legacy. Love it!

AWESOME pictures - Yosemite, odd rock piling guy, and trees, trees, trees. Tall trees. Big trees. I LOVE the trees. And yes, this little registered Republican would go around hugging them if I ever get there. (Except it looks like they put up fences around the Sequoias to stop you, bummer. Could you hug a redwood?)

The Schultz Family said...

"Squeaking" sounds so undignified. But alas, its true. I squeaked. When I wasn't gasping, or whining, or saying, "Ohmagosh, please slow down!" In short, I was a highly annoying back seat driver to my long suffering husband, who did a FANTASTICALLY careful job navigating the roads. Smooches, Mark!

And Teresa, yes, one can hug a redwood! I have a picture of me doing just that. But sadly, the biggest sequoias were fenced off, to prevent over-exuberant huggers, I guess.


Ben Simo said...

I stumbled across your blog using Blogger's Next Blog» link. Looks like you had a great adventure. You've given us some ideas for a future trip to California.

I love the scary drive along the coast. I think I'm the only one in our family that loved it when we drove from Bodega Bay down to San Francisco a few years ago. I heard lots of squeaks and whines as I zoomed around those corners -- safely, of course. I suspect I might have whined too if I weren't in control of the car. I could not resist. The road just called out to my little convertible with turbo-charger - and good tires: Zoom Zoom Zoom! :)