Friday, May 22, 2009

day twelve:

OK so day twelve is in the books!  We actually did a little catching up on rest today and only covered a total of 168 miles, the distance between Merced and Monterey and the return trip to Salinas.  Here’s your worthless trivia for the day.  What famous writer grew up in Salinas?  Many of you English majors will know this right off.  Another hint?  OK, he wrote the book Cannery Row (after the actual place in Monterey/picture included), which featured a character named Ed Rickets but referred to in the book only as “Doc.”  A second short novel titled Sweet Thursday features roughly the same set of characters including “Doc.”  Give up, or are you just tired of the English lesson?  The answer is (drum roll please) John Steinbeck- Michael’s favorite writer and one of Salinas’ favorite sons.


Mike and I rode to Monterey and, in reaching the city, accomplished one of our trip goals, that of reaching the West coast on our motorcycles!  It was cool.  I think there are some pictures.  We ate at a small café associated with a swanky hotel.  I would visit this place just to go to the bathroom.  I’m not kidding!  Mats at all the stalls, warm water to wash the lotion soap of your hands and cloth towels to dry them.  Now that is up town in my book.  I think I might install one of these in my home when I return!  As we walked around we noticed some really neat architecture.  One home looked like it belonged in “Lord of the Rings” as a hobbit house.  Like all of the things God makes, the beach was stunning- the water a vivid blue with the sun behind it and the floating kelp moving in large sinuous waves (Sorry, the spirit of Steinbeck made me wax eloquent for a moment!).


Mike and I chose to ride back early today probably because He was afraid that I would turn crabby and mean again today if he let me stay out too long!  We are staying in Salinas tonight with plans to get up and hit it early tomorrow.  We plan to visit Steinbeck’s grave in the morning before traveling north through San Francisco across the Golden Gate bridge to Sausalito before pushing on to end the day around Mendocino.


For those who are following daily I have a few corrections to make- actually only two.  First is my spelling of Nevada.  I don’t know how many of you also follow Miriam’s blog which is intended to encourage Michael and me and nauseate Megan, Mike’s sweetheart, with pictures of Clancy, our Labrador retriever.  In the latest post on her blog, Clancy is reading Webster’s Dictionary and is “disturbed” over my spelling of Nevada as “Neveda.”  Where is spell check when you need it!?  Anyway, I stand corrected.  Secondly, Michael said that my quoted mileage of 3000 miles was incorrect and that we had actually logged over 4000 miles at present.  These are the only two things that I’ve been wrong about over the last twelve days and I am gratified to be able to correct these minor errors.  Special thanks to Mike and Mimi for pointing them out!  That’s it for today.  We’ll see you again tomorrow.


  1. Highlights:

    BIG number 1) Getting to visit my boy John Steinbeck's home town (Salinas) as well as Cannery Row (which served as a big point of inspiration for his writing). I enjoy Steinbeck's writing like I enjoy oxygen, and it was just neat to 'put a name with a face' in words. His books Cannery Row and the sequel Sweet Thursday are both in my top 5 favorite reads. His character 'Doc' in these books was modelled after a friend of his, Ed Ricketts, who had a small marine laboratory on Cannery Row. J.S. fictionalizes this laboratory in Cannery Row, calling it 'Western Biological.' I know that I'm rambling, but it was so awesome to see the physical setting of two books that I love so much. I'm re-reading Sweet Thursday in honor of the day's journeys!!

    2) Sleeping late in a comfy bed.

    3) Seeing the Pacific Ocean for the first time! It's so blue and clear and COLD! I really liked it, but I don't think I'd trade 10 Carmel, California's for one Isle of Palms, SC. Haha hopefully Arnold won't come pound me for bad-mouthing his state!!

    4) Driving past/through California farmland. Have you ever smelled a dairy? It might make ya throw-up, but I kindof like it! It smells like hay and cow and silage (which is fermented corn). It was interesting to see where so much of America's produce/ dairy products come from.

    5) Having an awesome Tuna Melt for lunch on Cannery Row

    I'd like to take a second to tell each of our followers 'thanks!' Yall are truly making this trip even more of a pleasure. There's only so much you can see before you have to share it with someone--it'd be impossible to keep all of the sights and experiences to ourselves! So thanks for keeping-up with us!


  2. Boosk--you were in my mind all day and particularly as we walked around Cannery Row. Wish ya could have seen it with me.

  3. What's up "Doc and Dachshund"!

    Get it, it’s a vet joke.

    It's been interesting and I must say entertaining seeing the country through our eyes. I am somewhat disappointed that there wasn’t photo documentation of your bird encounter and what sounds to be multiple bike drops. Mike you’re being to kind to the “old fella”. It does appear you're holding up pretty good for an old guy, though!

    I'm thinking you were wise to take your "mucking humor" to packing lot. You never know how some “muckers” will react. Maggie says hello, licks for everyone. She's getting ready to go view the balloons over Fountain Inn. She loves to bark at the balloons.

    News: Soccer: Mauldin and Riverside Girls won State championships last night. Mann won the girl’s softball title. Freedom Weekend Aloft, I wouldn’t try to get back for it though. Sad note; Dan Foster died yesterday @ 80.

    In case you're tired, "Dachshund” pronounced Doc's son

  4. Steve and Cindy- thanks for the good words and the vet humor. I got it! Mike and I have been speaking to each other just like that all the way across the country. Sometimes I'm afraid that if I could see inside Mike's helmet he would have this big, "That was terrible" look on his face. Hey to Maggie!

  5. i read this super early this morning before we left for Haley-Boo's graduation & didn't get a chance to comment - but i Love the pictures! (: it's cool to have a place (& pictures) to put with the story from the books!

  6. Mike, Cannery Row looks so much like how I imagined it. Let me know how the beer float turns out. I'm praying for you guys.

  7. Hey fellas, just thought in the spirit of the your recent Steinbeck high, I would let ya know that JD and Nicole's baby, Caleb, said his first word today. It was an very distinguished, and oddly enough, british accented "John Steinbeck". Hope the ole saddle keeps treatin ya randy!

  8. Really?!...I was talking about an wonderously accredited author and I used bad grammar?! I meant, "It was A very distinguished...", not the ever so crafty "an".
    My appologies.

  9. Mike, I love Steinbeck...but it never ceases to annoy me that his Charley was a standard poodle! I realize the connotation was different then...but I just can't see that as a good thing!

    On another note, our Charley is a WATER DOG! Took her to a beachy spot today and she was in the water before DP & I got to the bottom of the trail. She looked like a little brown otter! Jumping around, splashing, diving, swimming! I thought we weren't going to be able to coax her to come home with us! :)

    Oh...and I was going to say the house above looked like a Sleeping Beauty cottage...but a hobbit house is appropriate too (I guess!?)

    Anyway, glad y'all are having fun! Can't wait to hear about stuff in person soon. :) Hope your time here will be a restful half-way point.


  10. well i guess im late in posting since I just now got back to internet, but its for sure steinbeezy leezy, as I just now began Cannery Row in your honor Miguel lol