We had decided before starting out on this adventure that we would give ourselves more time coming home than going to California. Giving ourselves three days with the hope of seeing north of the border no later than dinner time seemed reasonable and a lot more appealing than two longer days in the car (with two teenaged boys in the back!)
We had packed the bulk of our possessions the night before so the morning wouldn’t be too chaotic. The check-out time was reasonable but we knew we had to get on the road at some point in the day and wanted to spend a little bit more time walking the beach and saying our goodbyes to each and every speck of sand not to mentioned that gorgeous bay.
After all my Ross stops (man I got some GREAT deals!) and the other odds and ends our already packed trunk barely had an inch to spare.
It took a bit of ‘english’ but after some creative maneuvering Tom managed to find room for everything…
After the car was packed we all reluctantly piled in to drive back to the main building to check out. The cleaning staff were waiting for us to leave (they sure are efficient there)!
While Tom did the checking out I took the opportunity to snap a few pictures of the lobby and surrounding areas.
It was bitter-sweet to walk down that winding walkway to the beach. Each of us took our pictures and our movies and said our goodbyes in our own ways.
(Above photo by Tom)
I was all jealous of the people who were obviously there to stay, at least for THAT day if not for longer.
We posed for one last group shot on the beach
(above photo by Tom)
Here are a few more youtube videos from that last day.
and one walking back up the path…
We hit the road with me back in the navigators seat. Didn’t I mention how bad I am at that? Yep I’m sure I did. We did a bit of back tracking to have a change of scenery and to have ONE last burger at the In-n-out mmmm it was good. Well for all of us except for Sean. They mistakenly put cheese on his burger and he’s not a fan of cheese. Check out Sean’s I hate cheese face in the photo..
Then Tom set out on the highway. He asked me to find him the best way to the five. Um, well we got there eventually by way of the San Fran peninsula but hey we got to see where Berkley was and we got to cross the very long San Mateo bridge! In my defence the craptacular AAA map didn’t have which short burst of highway you needed to take to get to the road they DID have on the map. So for future reference, buy map of the San Francisco area! The San Mateo bridge was neato though!
After that ever so slight detour (ehem) we were back on the I5 and heading north instead of north-west-ish. We didn’t have any reservations for hotels on the way back and being we were following more of a zen navigation approach we decided we would stop wherever we got around a reasonable dinner time. We made it as far as Redding CA. We drove the ‘main drag’ checking out the hotels and the one that looked half decent was in fact all booked up. Turns out they had some kind of baseball tournament in town. The other ones, one we had considered after reading the book gave me bad vibes. I trust my vibes.
We were all hungry so we decided to have dinner at the Marie Callendar’s in town and take another look at the Triple ‘A’ guidebook. We saw there was a Hilton Garden Inn in town ( I had some good ju-ju feelings about it) and after dinner (and buying a to-go chocolate pie!) went to check it out. Well, that is after we FOUND IT. Once again the AAA led us down a garden path, or rather away from the “Garden Inn”. The exit they told us to take didn’t actually exist! Once we got past that hurdle lo and behold there it was.
We brought our overnight essentials into our connecting rooms. Tom, Sean and I headed out to pick up some paper plate and cutlery to eat our dessert, and there was that one last Ross I just happened to see as we were heading into town…..
While I “Rossed” they bought the supplies to eat our chocolate spoils and Tom stopped for gas on the way back to the hotel. We went inside to pick up some coolers to drink for the evening and I saw they has some of those Hot Fries that I love so much (and can’t freaking get here!) This entire trip there was NONE to be had anywhere. I mean come ON, why just in norther California!? But yay! I had some. I would find room in that car trunk if it killed me!
The boys came back to our room we ate our dessert and the boys went back to their own room for the night. Tom and I sat watching the Miss America pageant (my pick won ha!) and sipping our frosty coolers. I was relieved we had a nice place to spend our last night in California even if it wasn’t at the beach :(