Day Forty Four: Even Paradise Gets Old Sometimes : California (Bodega Bay, Fort Bragg, Garberville)

(Events of Tuesday, April 28th, blogged Saturday, May 2nd)

We awoke to a bright, bright, bright sunshiney day-all of the fog had melted away, and this was the new and improved view from our campsite…

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Despite the sun, I woke up feeling sluggish and unmotivated and a bit slimey from the humidity. I dozed much of the morning away. Eventually though I could slug about no longer. It was still a bit chilly and blustery, but the sun was glittering off the water, so we decided to cross the street and take a stroll over on the ocean side of the campground. The pictures make it look a little grayer than it was, but they even had these handy benches where I could sit and scribble in may paper journal while breathing in the salty sea air. The dunes and the sea grass and the brown sand all reminded me of one of my favorite spots for soul nurturing-the Outer Banks of North Carolina. I felt at home for one of the first times on the trip.

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As we were ambling along, a sea gull flew overhead, swooped down right in front of me, snatched a HUGE crab out of the water, and flew down the beach! He couldn’t go too far as the crab probably outweighed him, so we were able to watch from fairly close by as he wrestled with his prey, all the while keeping an eye peeled for stealthy interlopers. (The bird on the left is all: “Doo de doo, nothing to see here, if I’m not looking at you, you can’t see me…” *moonwalks closer*)

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There was also a really cool seaside sculpture, which at first glance just seemed like a bizarrely phallic anomaly, but, upon reading the plaque entitled “Whale Ballet”, and making a closer inspection, turned out to be quite lovely.

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Feeling a bit peckish (pun alert), and having recently been alerted to the fact that Bodega Bay is where Hitchcock’s movie The Birds was set and filmed, I couldn’t resist stopping at this thematically matching roadside eatery.

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The view was spectacular, and the fish and chips were as scrumptious as the ones I had in England. And when I told them I couldn’t decide between the clam chowder or the fish and chips, she offered to give me a half serving of clam chowder free!

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I wasn’t entirely comfortable with this guy keeping his beady eye on us throughout the meal though, so we didn’t tarry.

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Much of the day was spent driving along twisty, turney, slow going Route One. And, as I was in a grumpy mood, and the lack of any real progress along the coast combined with the nausea-inducing, somewhat scary turns, and fatigue were making me even crankier. I was over it. Just wanted to be home. So unimpressed with the (still spectacular) scenery that I barely took any pictures, save for these two, and for the life of me I can’t recall where they were shot or why!

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At one point I saw a sign for a Sea Glass Museum, and since I love the sea and I love glass, I decided to stop in. It was totally lame, and the proprietor never even came out of the back to greet me, but it did inform me that nearby Glass Beach was NOT closed. Never having heard of Glass Beach, but intrigued and in need of a leg stretch, we decided to check it out.

Glass Beach is pretty much what the name implies. The beach area is covered in small pebbles and rounded bits of smooth glass in various colors. The phenomenon occurs because back before we realized polluting the oceans was a bad idea, the residents of Fort Bragg dumped most of their garbage into several nearby “water dumps”. Over time the biodegradable stuff melted away, the scrap metal was salvaged, and the glass and pottery was worn down by the waves into small smooth pieces which wash ashore. It was really cool, and a nice diversion on a gray day, and we only gathered about 1/4 cup worth in an attempt not to be greedy. Since the sump sites are no longer active, the glass supply is dwindling, to the point that some stores (including the sea glass museum) are selling broken glass chunks to be tossed BACK into the waves as a source of replenishment.

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And then there was more driving. And more irritability. And more being cross with myself for managing to be in a bad mood when I was surrounded by blue ocean and scenic views and not trapped in an office somewhere like most people I knew.  It got to the point where I couldn’t even get excited about stopping at cool kitschy tourist traps! Drastic action needed to be taken. So, after considering, and then bypassing several perfectly reasonable state campgrounds, I randomly decided to stop at what was basically a half deserted RV park, where some sketchy looking dudes were revving motorized dirt bikes around, the promised WiFi only worked from one or two parking spaces in front of the office, and the largest and best maintained facility on the property was a looming church.

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3 thoughts on “Day Forty Four: Even Paradise Gets Old Sometimes : California (Bodega Bay, Fort Bragg, Garberville)

  1. Mmmm definitely sounds like you need some down time… I can only imagine how tired and cranky I would be no matter how much I had dreamed of & wanted to see various places… all that moving & driving & constant travelling is very tiring! Loving the vicarious opportunity to enjoy this trip through your blog – but go cuddle Annie sit still & give yourself a bit of a break 🙂 As the indomitable Scarlett O’Hara said ‘Tomorrow is another day’. Hugs from across the pond.


  2. We are really enjoying your blog Eden and Annie! Sorry to hear we won’t have a tweet up in Vancouver; wishing you well on the rest of your epic journey.
    Timber’s M&P.


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