From Lincoln CA to San Francisco CA
Drove 116 miles.
It was hot-hot again today. Sat on the back porch again reminiscing and watching pixie-like humming birds at the feeders. Walked the ranch a last time, enjoying the horses in the field next door and neighbor cat. Breakfast next.
As we drove to town spied a big herd of cows wading chest deep, trying to cool off in what looked like a big mud pond. Side-to-side, butt-to-butt, and face-to-butt, all trying to squeeze in. Looked like the Hong Kong subway letting out (remember, mom?). No room to move and, if they did move, they did it in unison.
Lincoln CA is the closest town to the Lazy J. We ate breakfast with Joe at a cute downtown place called Kim's Kountry Kitchen. Mattuschs would love it. All kinds of trophy heads on the walls (including two bison), old hunting and fishing gear, even a menacing looking jaw-type bear trap. We ate in the front with all this situated behind us, so not intimidated. Traditional breakfast--two eggs over medium, hash browns, real sour dough toast, a taste of bacon. Good service. Good country cookin'.
After breakfast walked around downtown. Small in size but big in character--more than we expected. A couple of great looking dinner spots. Too bad not hanging around long enough to check them out. Browsed a cool thrift shop and a gun shop. This IS cowboy country.
Next, headed to the big city of SFO (airline speak for San Francisco). We dreaded I-80, but turned out to be a breeze compared to what we remember. Still fast, lots of traffic, but not sooo crowded as those Sunday afternoons returning from Tahoe. Only hit stop-and-go for about the last five miles before crossing the Oakland bridge into the City!! We hit it just before the worst of rush hour, so not too stressful. Saw our first view of the ocean from a hill on the Interstate just before the bridge. Yahoo, BIG water. Love it.
Between Lincoln and SF, temp went from 90 to 66 degrees. This is a typical weather diff in CA, but oh what a relief it always is to go from hot-hot to comfy. The "fog" hanging over the City (not the same kind of damp, bone-chillling, low-lying stuff back East and you can still see where you are driving here) brought a calming comfort. We smiled as we talked about it.
Talked to Suzi K on the phone as we crossed the bridge, and she was "ready to receive." Good timing. Arrived about 4p. Suzi had the Stoli and snacks ready. We toured the newly decorated rooms--paint and trim contrasting colors, new furniture, new huge TV, restored Frank Lloyd Wright-ish fireplace. It looked better than the other better it has always been.
James got home a bit later, cleaned up, and off we went to Pera, a Turkish-Mediterranean restaurant in the City we had not been to before. James took us a round about way for his usual mini-tour. We so enjoyed this, remembering the old and seeing the new in this ever-evolving locale.
And what a fabulous meal! We all tried something trad Turkish from the menu. Wait staff was very helpful and attentive. I had phyllo dough stuffed w/spinach, leek and feta and arugula salad with Turkish apricot, red onion and goat cheese topped with pomegranate vinaigrette. It was VERY good. And lots of wine, of course, so I don't really remember what everyone else had. (Deb tattling on herself, but we were all in the same happy spot, if that helps).
Returned home. Kennedys always make us feel at home in their home. Continued talking the night away in front of the fireplace. Warm, stuffed, happy, content. Can't ask for much more.
Mike says best chicken fried steak of the trip so far at Kim's. He's always test tasting this item.
Kennedys have the best shower on the trip and the ONLY heated bathroom floor we have ever experienced. Wow!