11/6/2020 – 11/23/2020
The last two weeks is what we are dubbing “The Social Portion” of our trip. It hasn’t been great for the painting, but it has been great to catch up with lots of friends and family from 6 feet apart. As everyone knows, it has been a interesting challenge seeing everyone while masked and not being able to greet each other like we would like.
After departing Patricks Point and making a quick morning walk to Agate Beach we started the drive through more redwood trees, then rolling hills and lots of fall colors. Eventually we pulled into our destination which was a small family owned winery called Testa Vineyards. We setup and then had a lovely evening wine tasting on their patio. The vineyard was started by the family’s Italian great grandparents who settled there in 1910 and has turned into a sweet family operation. The mother is the winemaker and the daughters are running the wine tasting room. We really enjoyed their wine. It was a cool evening so we were bundled up, but enjoyed the sun setting and then walking back to the airstream for the evening.
Our next two days were spent in Santa Rosa. Our campsite was in the Sonoma County Fairgrounds which is not a location that I would recommended except that it had full hook ups and laundry. So it gave us some time to clean house and refresh for the next few weeks. We were able to do a few nice hikes and catch up with a friend that I met at Rancho La Puerta a few years ago.
The following two nights were spent at another Harvest Host site Chardonnay Golf and Winery. Our location was fantastic….parked right up against the grape vines and overlooking the 10th fairway. We were able to watch the lighting change on the vines and surrounding mountains, as well as get in 9 holes of golf. It was a beautiful golf course and fun to play in between vineyards instead of trees. Unfortunately the grapes had already been harvested and a bit past their peak in coloring so they didn’t provide much inspiration for painting.
We started to head north and made a stop in Roseville at another Harvest Host location at the Woodcreek Golf Course. This site wasn’t as scenic as we were basically parked in a parking lot in City limits but we were able to see my brother and his family and play some golf.
Vina Castellano in Auburn was our next Harvest host stop over . It was a spectacular spot, located next to the vines, with power and the wine was great. So we stayed two nights which was great. One of the days was rainy so we spent the early morning walking laps around the vineyard before the rain started and then hunkered down and made reservations for campsites for the next few weeks. We were able to spend some time with Susan Lockyer (my college roommate and old business partner) which was wonderful as always.
The following two nights we relocated to in front of my brother Dave’s house so that we could spend time with he and his family. It was a great way to see them while social distancing outside in their backyard around a fire pit.
We started our journey south from there and stayed in front on the street of a few more friends houses. It is so nice to catch up with people and yet be able to sleep in our own home on wheels.
We left the East Bay and drove over the newer Bay Bridge which I hadn’t seen yet and loved it. We drove through San Francisco since stopping with the Airstream wasn’t really an option and on to Woodside to see another friend. We got set up in his driveway and then drove over to Stanford to show Ross the campus and the Rodin sculptures. Stanford has a beautiful campus.
We made a day trip to Half Moon Bay the following day and were blessed with a clear blue sky and some beautiful walks along beaches and the cliff tops. We took advantage of the fresh seafood and had some oysters on the beach.
The following morning we took a beautiful dog walk through the streets of Woodside and were amazed at the real estate and the prices of homes in this area. The prices in California is insane! We then spent the afternoon visiting the Pulgas Water Temple and the National Historic Landmark, Filoli with my brother Jeff. The gardens were beautiful with stunning fall colors and Christmas lights twinkling through out the trees and garden. I hadn’t been there in years and it was another magical afternoon.
Next relocation was a move to my brother Jeff’s driveway for the next few nights. We enjoyed being able to see him and catching up. While in the area we also drove to Capitola one day and had lunch with a friend and had a lovely walking tour of the area. The following morning we did a hike with some friends from Boulder who relocated to the area and had a great hike at Fremont Older Natural Preserve which was beautiful and then had brunch with them.
Next stop in the Central Coast!