Because of the bad weather we didn’t stop or stay in San Francisco,other then one overnight, we kept following Hwy.1,all along the coast,the RV camping spots are not nearly as well maintained as the ones in Oregon, in California, we found them to be quite dirty, washrooms not cleaned properly, and overall not a good atmosphere. This was mainly the case in Northern California. North of Hearst castle,at William Randolph Hearst State park, is an elephant seal rookery, we stopped there, in the pouring rain, but the male seals were mainly battling it out on the sand for their own spot of beach,the females were watching ,with a very bored expression on their faces. Later on, on the way back from our trip, we stopped again and i will tell you about it then, and show some photos of these amazing animals. We headed for Morro bay, or rather Los Osos, where there is a Volkswagen,Westfalia store, with every possible gadget and part for a Westy you could imagine. Needless to say,Bert couldn’t wait to get there.
I forgot to mention that it had rained, very, very hard!!! So, because of this, some roads were blocked and just not used at all ,including Hwy.1!!! parts of it anyway. We drove route 23, from Hwy.101 to Hwy.1, this route 23 wound itself up and down, through an incredible landscape, cacti everywhere, bougainvillea,growing as high as the trees,some Joshua trees, beautiful pink and orange rock formations,now it really felt like we were going south!!!! We kept meeting snow plows though, at least, that what they looked like, but, after a while, after meeting up with some car size rocks on the road, we realized they were rock plows, the sides of the hills were caving in, just too much rain to handle. I just could not imagine if one of those rocks were to come down on your car,kind of reminds me of the look of the royal terns……. After about 10 minutes driving ,we stopped behind a huge lineup, no idea what was happening. Should not be too long we thought……2 hours later……no use going back, once the line moved slowly again we were directed to route 27,by now it was almost dark, route 27 is the same idea as route 23, up and down, winding through the dessert, back again to Hwy.101. We found out later on that there had been a huge mudslide, blocking hwy.1. So now it was dark, and oh yes, Bert quietly mentioned that we were almost out of gas!!! cute!!!! We made it to the outskirts of San Francisco, found a gas station, and a Starbucks, so i could check online for an RV place, but, like i said, it was dark, and raining,looking at a map, i really had no idea where to start, so we ended up parking the van in a Target parking lot, its free, very secure, all you need to do is check with the manager that its ok, he looked at us as if we were crazy, but heh!!! we slept ok, a bit noisy , but we felt safe. Walmart is another store you can park at, but always let the manager know you will be there.
No more birds!!! for now……Life in the Westy slowly became easier, lets face it, we are talking small space for two people, but once the weather became a bit, just a bit warmer, i didnt freeze anymore , up in the top bunk!! The fridge worked well on 12 volt ,when we drove, and once the car was plugged in, it did ok too, but it would not work on propane, no matter how we tried, it would not start. One of our most important food are vegetables, and for that i bought a wonderful basket in Mendocino, we always had a supply of onions,carrots,yams,leek ,parsnip and potatoes, they stayed fresh the longest. We tried not to eat too many canned foods, and when i did buy them, i bought organic, not nearly as much salt!!!! Food is very expensive in the US, plus there is the difference in the dollars, i visited some healthfood stores, and i have to say, they are just beautiful, very well laid out, fresh vegies, wonderful breads, but oh so expensive!!!! Gas prices were good, as they were at home too, we paid on average $ 2.80 US per gallon, so a very good price.