Driving up the California Coast

Hordes of people have asked for the blog to restart, so here it is…

First we’ll catch up on September, yes September! Remember the blue moon? We saw ours in Palm Springs.

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The blue moon looks rather orange…

This was part of a second annual trip to Palm Springs with Stephen and Kathy.

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Bloody Marys first thing in the morning. Can’t beat it.

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We did find a roadrunner, but it’s hard to get him to stand still in the sun for a photo.

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Kathy is testing the multi-functional sandals Michael received from Liz and Jesse. Great for opening a cold Corona.

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For a sense of how hot it was (~100), realize that the ice around these beers melted before we could finish drinking the contents.

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Not much green here except where the golf courses and resorts are irrigated.

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Despite the heat, the boys enjoyed some golf.

We visited Sunnylands Center and Gardens, once the winter home of Walter and Leonore Annenberg. (Yes, related to the Annenberg foundation that often sponsors NPR segments.) He was the ambassador to Great Britain under Richard Nixon, but made his billions from the creation of TV Guide and Seventeen magazines. The estate has frequently hosted political and royal leaders. In fact, Barack Obama has been there six times.

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Unusual to see so much green in Palm Springs.

After a lovely time, mostly at the pools, we headed toward the Pacific Ocean and up the California coast.

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Riding dirt bikes is popular here. We met a 14-year-old looking to get on the pro circuit.

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An enterprising artist has created a park of huge sculptures of dinosaurs and other rusting beasts.

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Statue of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, who landed on the west coast of North America in 1542. This is at Point Loma Peninsula west of San Diego.

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Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery near San Diego has more than 100,000 military graves.

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Near Laguna Beach

In San Simeon, another publishing mogul, William Randolph Hearst, spent 28 years building Hearst Castle. Interestingly, the architect of this grand estate was a woman, Julia Morgan. This was the place to be when Hearst and his sweetheart, movie starlet Marion Davies, hosted the elite in the early days of Hollywood.

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80 years earlier we’d have been rubbing shoulders with Clark Gable, Cary Grant, and Greta Garbo

Farther up the coast, the California shoreline is rich with colors of blue water and sky and textures of scrubby plant growth.

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The view north…

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and south.

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Sheltered beaches…

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and striking bridges.

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Beautiful weather perfect for sunbathing.

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Michael found some bathing beauties.

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They called to him to join them lazing in the sun…but Michael declined.

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We passed on surfing too…

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but saw plenty of folks enjoying great waves.

Next we moved from California’s coast to California’s mountains.

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