Roadtrip Archives

In the summer of 2003, Charlotte and I decided to take a trip across the country by rental car (why a rental? Don't ask--it's complicated, dull, and annoying.), stopping at various friends along the way, seeing the sights, and culminating in our annual visit to the Burningman festival in Nevada. This is the diary we kept along the way.

email: roadtrip at sebbo dot org
phone: 781/308-4152

Rough Itinerary
14-20 Jamestown NY
20-21 Cleveland OH
21-24 Louisville KY
24-25 Memphis TN
25-26 Hot Springs AR
? Oklahoma City OK
? Albuquerque NM
30 Taos NM
31 Mesa Verde CO
? Grand Canyon AZ
6-8 Tucson
8-10 Phoenix AZ
10-11 Indio CA
11-13 Los Angeles CA
13-16 Yosemite CA
16-24 San Francisco CA
24 Tahoe CA
Reno NV
24-Sept 1 Black Rock City NV
2 Salt Lake City UT
3-11 ?????
12 Louisville KY

Thu, Aug 21, 2003

Charlotte writes:

San Francisco

Well, San Francisco is a lovely city and we have been eating our way through it, Zazies (delicious French food in the Haight Ashbury area), the stinking Rose (yum, wonderful garlicky goodness-try the garlic cheese fondue and the garlic ice cream), and Plouf (more yummie French food, possibly the best French frie I have ever had. The Indian pub food experience -- chips with curry or Poori or stuffed Jalapenos with that Guiness? Thomas and I survived a Sushi restaurant with Karen and Sebastian. It was preceeded by a lovely soak in Palo Alto at a hot tub/steambath place called Watercourse way. There were these wonderful, private rooms. Ours had a jacuzzi, a cold bath and a steam bath. The whole room was done in a vaguely Morrocan style, inlaid terra cotta tiles and jade tiles on the walls surrounding the jacuzzi and covering the dome over the tub, iridescent turquoise tile in the jacuzzi. It was beautiful and very relaxing. My favorite part were the shrieks whenever someone would dunk down into the cold bath-- ahhh, invigorating.

Then we made the rounds of standard sights: Golden gate bridge and park, walk along the coast, the wharf, Haight-Ashbury, Good Vibrations, Arboretum, and the Cartoon art Museum. We also saw the exploratorium- a great place with tons of great hands-on science-related activities. The neatest things were one of the magnet ones using black sand, and one really long tube that distorted sound and playing with a chromograph, which registered duration and pitch of sound. I found it much more interesting than the Children's Science museum.

The hills are really quite amazing. Some are so steep that it looks as if once you get to the top that you will fall over the edge. I keep worrying about the contents of the trunk. Is it so full that we will topple over backwards going up this hill? It feels like 45 degree angles--arghh. Sometimes it feels like 90 degree angles!

Heading into San Francisco we passed through several miles of windmills. It was amazing watching them spin--big, and white with three large blades and evenly spaced along the pale yellow-amber colored rolling hills. Random winds would set them sequentially into motion or pick out a few and send thre blades spinning. It was magnificent and hypnotic.

Fogs here roll in in layers. It is fascinating to watch it happen. The water is impossibly cold and the vegetation is nifty. My favorite is a low-growing succulent, which produces a stubbley little colored flower, tulip-like in form. It grows in large patches along dunes and the shoreline.

We have seen some really cool birds: egrets, pelicans. Today we do our last bit of sightseeing and we start prepping for Burning Man.

Now we have to get ready for Burning Man. Much of our trip has been punctuated by small windows of email/phone access due to the remoteness of the sites. T-mobile coverage is spotty at best. Burning Man will be over a week that we will be off the grid. For years it has been debated whether having net access/phone access would be good for the event. The answer has been no. At Burning Man we break out the walkie talkies, yeah!! Now it is time to prep our gear, check out the batteries, plan for food and look through some of the camps and their offerings. Sunday will pull onto the Playa. It has been a long, exciting journey.

[/diaries/roadtrip/lotte] ###

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