Here we are climbing Mt. Diablo, Southgate in misty conditions for Donny's club ride. A huge turnout. Miss P. and I decided to stop at the junction and skip the remaining 4 miles to the top because we wanted to save ourselves for the big treat -- Morgan Territory.
Miss P. figured out alternative ways to get us away from traffic and enjoy spectacular views. Here we are in the parking lot of CSU East Bay Concord campus.
Beautiful. The ground was littered with white petals resembling a snowstorm. Despite our drought, we were blessed with green hills and wildflowers everywhere.
Lovely. Miss P. found an alternative for our lunch stop as well, taking us to the charming town of Clayton. We stopped in a park next to a market. Perfect and much nicer than a congested shopping mall.
Beautiful purple flowers on the climb through Morgan Territory. Boy those rollers through the woods were tiring. Wait, wait for it .....
Why do I suffer each year doing this ride, and this year, in particular, feeling out of shape but slugging it out? For this -- descending Morgan Territory. It rocks. 54.5 miles and 5 hr 40 min. later, we were spent but happy.
Yesterday was Friday the 13th if you believe in that sort of thing. Tomorrow is 30 days until last day to file taxes. Today is, ta da, Pi Day! Given today's temperature of 90 degrees, celebrating with a slice of pie and some ice cream sounds like a good idea but, water took the cake for me. Where was I, oh yes, I'll take being an irrational number over being square any day. The Boyfriend is shaking his head. Meanwhile ....
Lookey, new friends wanting to join Miss P's club outing today in the Santa Cruz Mountains. We had a guest join us and hopefully he'll join our club, too. Mr. G. also showed up! We were on Stetson when we came across these sculptures. Which reminds me, we met these male cyclists on Old Santa Cruz Highway who like to visit the dinosaurs. No doubt they'd like to get my number, too. Stetson is a beautiful road, full of redwoods and a good climb as well.
It was hot today, so hot, that I had to stop on Highland before Eureka Canyon, go back to the fire station (oh gosh imagine that) for water. No doubt the firemen said of me, "Now there's a real number." The gang met me at the Summit Store. I guzzled more water. Swell but sweltering time.
Wildlife on Bailey Avenue, aka dinner. Yum. Behind the turkey, lupine bloom.
"The long and winding road ...." We're here in Rancho Canada Del Oro, another spectacular Open Space Preserve. I saw its sign once while biking along McKean Road and knew a visit was in order. Mountain bikers also allowed and we saw a few.
Sculpture in the preserve, aka, a Pacific Madrone, I believe.
More wildlife, aka, a butterfly with its wings of desire.
Not exactly the tree of life, eh, but still breathtaking. On the way to the park, we saw Mr. Bill in his yellow banana biking on McKean. He waved back.
Another example of wildlife, aka, a librarian. We enjoyed the 4.5 mile hike, including crossing the stream that no one told us about. We managed to walk on rocks to get across without getting wet. Well, I slipped and my shoe got a bit wet. Of course, I'll embellish this story and tell The Boyfriend how it was a raging river and we barely got across the rapids while being chased by wild boar....
Rarely do I fly out of my home airport (San Jose). Love the Southwest terminal. Some turbulence prompting flight attendant to say, "Now's a good time to make sure your seat is fastened." I felt reassured.... but my colleagues and I landed safely in Los Angeles. Thought we were flying over San Diego but apparently it was the lovely harbor of Long Beach. Clearly, I could do with a geography lesson or two.
Lobby of overpriced hotel in Long Beach. No free Internet access either. First stop of the evening -- the bar before discovering the Promenade, a street of fantastic restaurants.
After each long day of my business trip, I had some free time to explore. No, not the London Eye, people. Long Beach was quite lovely to my surprise.
No people, we're not in Venice, like it has palm trees. No time though to explore the waterways, unfortunately.
No people, we are not in Sausalito. Look at the skyline. We're in Long Beach.
Must say, this is quite a walkable and bicycle friendly city. Plus the city provides a free bus called The Passport. I was pleasantly surprised staying in Long Beach.
Found some time to visit The Queen Mary with colleagues, hello my friends from Sonoma. It's now a hotel. Below it is a russian submarine.
Inside the Queen Mary. Can we say, redrum redrum, The Shining.... Loved that they re-purposed this historic vessel. Charming. I'm glad that I had some time to be a tourist.
Back at LAX, ready to go home. And the Oscar goes to .... yes, The Boyfriend, while on his own business trip in another state, still found time to make me feel special and put up with my babbling.