A day in Santa Cruz

A lively drive from San Francisco Airport over the mountains last night – all last-minute curves narrow lanes and concrete medians – brought us to Santa Cruz and this lovely house that we found on AirBnB. Its gorgeous inside and cost less than a hotel. Sadly the tandem promised in the spec was not available for some reason, but it was only a twenty minute walk to the famous boardwalk.
Among its many attractions is the Big Dipper (in the background) which has been there a very long time and which, of course, we were going to go on…
Tom was very gung-ho about it, even if in the queue, he began to think rather seriously about whether it was something he really wanted to do…
But it was great fun; a proper slam-you-around Old School rollercoaster which starts in darkness and rockets over the rails at breakneck speed until you are exhausted trying to hold on. It was a great start to the day!
P took him on the Haunted Castle ride and we discovered that Tom can do death-defying as long it involves physical risk. When the threat is purely a result of ghostly lights and your imagination, he’d really rather not look…
And the rides that made me want to heave of course, he wanted to do again. I was fine with that as long as he did it on his own (though we had thought there might be someone else on this ride too…)
There were very few people around with no queueing for anything. At the end of the pier was a classic end-of-pier snack place with a really friendly Latina waitress who got us smoothies and iced coffees and acknowleged that yes, the summer was pretty much over as far as they were concerned. We are keenly aware of our holiday coming to an end too.
Honking beneath us were these guys. They are a fixture on the Santa Monica pier and I remember them from spending an evening here when I was a student travelling around on Amtrack.

We walked back to the house along quiet streets in bright, late afternoon sunshine. Its a really pretty neighbourhood and P and I could both very happily live in Santa Cruz.

Time for one final meal out; at a local Italian recommended by the owner of the house. We got spifffed up to celebrate our month away. We’ll really miss being able to spend so much time together once the treadmill of school and work starts back up again next week.
Categories: California 2014, Hawaii

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