Roving Retrievers-Tails and Trails

A “tail” of two Golden Retrievers (and their humans)as they travel west:

Day 61, Carmel, CA-Los Gatos, CA 73 miles, 1 hours 24 min

Today we leave Carmel. Carmel By The Sea sits in a true story book setting, exactly as I had always pictured. Unfortunately, our stay was hampered by intermittent rain which made it difficult to explore as much as we had hoped. MJ and Bobby loved the beach but unfortunately due to the weather we were only able to make two trips there.

Yesterday, our second trip to the beach followed an early morning rain event which once the rain stopped, seemingly everyone with a dog went to the beach. The tide was high making the beach much narrower than when we were there the day before but still tons and tons of room for all dogs to execute their daily social meet and greet. As the four of us walked along the beach both MJ and Bobby were running back and forth, the surf was high crashing into the shore with a loud thunderous sound making it difficult for the dogs to hear us when we called them, so loud in fact at times they could not hear me when I whistled.

Having fun on the beach

Having fun on the beach

Getting to know new friends in a dog's way

Getting to know new friends in a dog’s way

We came along another couple who had two dogs themselves. We stopped to talk, Bobby being his usual self playing with his new friends, MJ, as usual had enough and decided to walk away. Thankfully we were watching MJ as he started to walk away, in the opposite direction. In short order, his walk turned into a trot which for MJ, it might as well be a full out sprint. Sue and I started calling for him, he couldn’t hear. I was whistling but the surf was just too loud for him to hear me. You could tell he became disorientated and was in a sort of panic as he could not see any of us. His pace quickened. I decided to take off after him and had all I could do to gain on him. As I was running, which I was now running about as fast as I could, I was yelling, people saw what was going on and were trying to grab him but, as I said he was in a sort of panic and wanted nothing to do with other people. Finally I was able to catch up to him, his relief, (and ours), obvious. Whew….Thankfully we saw him shortly after he took off otherwise who knows what would have happened.

Our stop in Carmel was just too short. We tried to make the best of it as we decided to take in the sights from our car. We drove down 17 Mile Drive through the Monterey Peninsula and were able to see all the great golf courses which include Pebble Beach and Spy Glass. We tried to get out of the car a couple of times but the wind too strong, the temperature too cool, and at times, the rain just a little to hard. We also took a ride to the “Mission San Carlos Borromeo del rio Carmelo”, or simply “The Carmel Mission”.

Carmel Mission

Carmel Mission

An interesting and brief history of the California missions is back in the late 1700’s the main goal of the California missions was to convert Native American into devoted Christians and Spanish citizens. Spain used mission work to influence the natives with cultural and religious instruction. Missions were established about a days worth of travel apart or approximately every 30 miles. There are 21 total missions in California however the missions extend south into the Baja Peninsula.  The Carmel Mission was first built in 1797 and is one of the most authentically restored Roman Catholic mission churches in California. Of course the sun broke through the clouds once we arrived, I guess there is a message somewhere there that needs to be recognized…

So today it is and it’s time to get on the move. The scheduled trip today will mark the shortest distance between two stops of our entire trip but even more important, the last time we will stay with friends before arriving back home. We will be staying with our very good and close friends Daral and Carol but equally important we will be seeing Carol’s Mom and Dad whom we haven’t seen in quite some time. Today we need to get to Los Gatos on schedule because Carols dad is celebrating his 85thbirthday today!

For other reasons I won’t get into in this blog, today is a very special day for both Sue and I as it has been quite some time since we have seen Carol’s Mom and Dad, Jill, (Mum to us), and Bob. We are both very excited and as expected an emotional reunion takes place. Two very special and important people both of which are very near and dear to Sue and I.

Talking with Mum and Bob

Talking with Mum and Bob

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A hike through the redwoods

A hike through the redwoods

Bobby meeting Mini-Me.. Carol's neighbor's dog

Bobby meeting Mini-Me.. Carol’s neighbor’s dog

Our scheduled stay in Los Gatos is far too short. Daral and Carols house in Los Gatos is simply beautiful and we will enjoy every minute of our stay. The weather here too isn’t very cooperative as it rains almost continuously, but the warmth and sunshine indoors is every thing we have grown to expect. We will only be in town for two days as it’s almost time to point the nose of the car back home. Once that happens we will be laser focused on the end goal but not before we stop in South Lake Tahoe, CA and Park City, UT for a little more skiing before we finally head home.

Once we arrive in Los Gatos, MJ and Bobby get out of the car in a sort of stuper. I think they have become accustomed to car rides of greater distances and perhaps todays short ride is a little relief. As soon as Carol opens the front door the dogs simply go nuts as they get to see “Auntie Carol” again! No doubt they know they will be pampered and are looking forward to a fun stay.