Retirement: World's longest coffee break. travel blog

Power outage dinner

Riding 17 Mile Drive




The closest we'll get to Pebble Beach





Monterey Marina

Pacific Grove Municipal Course

Don't hit the deer!

One of the course mascots

Evening in Pacific Grove

Generous glass of wine!

As we headed South from the Avenue of the Giants the temperature started to increase and we decided it was finally time for some AC. That's when we found out the AC in the van isn't acutally working. Bummer. So we drove down the highway in the 96F heat at 65mph with the windows down. We'll have to get that fixed before we hit the desert! It was a hot ride and luckily we were able to get a great rate at the Sonoma Hilton in Santa Rosa so we stopped there for the night and cooled off in the pool.

The next day we continued on our hot and windy way, through the gong show on the highway around the Bay Area and then back to the cool of the coast just South of Santa Cruz. We stopped for lunch at a really cute seaside town called Capitola, then continued to the Centrella Inn in Pacific Grove on the Monterey Peninsula. Another quaint Victorian Inn in a town with a historic downtown drag. After enjoying the free appetizers and wine, we were just about to head out for a walk to dinner when we got to experience one of those classic Californian events. No, it wasn't an earthquake, it was a power outage! The power was out for all of Pacific Grove and parts of Montery for 4 hours at the busiest time on a Friday evening (later we found out it was caused by "an overhead equipment failure"?!). Luckily Dale had a small flashlight with him so we stumbled our way to the Passionfish restaurant, hoping they might give us some food and found that while they had a limited menu (5 items), they were still serving. We had a fun meal in the dark, crusty bread, squid and mango appetizer followed by crab salad and washed down with Prosecco. Then headed back to the Inn where a couple of the guests had pulled out their instruments and were giving an impromptu, candle light concert. The musicians were great but the enthusiastic audience who were singing along weren't quite as good (apparently some of the restaurants wouldn't serve food but were happy to serve drinks!).

We started today off with a great breakfast then headed out on our bikes on 17 Mile Drive, a road that follows the coast from Monterey, through the famous Pebble Beach golf course, to Carmel by the Sea. A fabulous ride with great scenery. After a speedy trip back with the wind at our backs, we did a quick costume change and drove to the Pacific Grove Municipal Golf course where we played a very pleasant 9 holes for $25 each (compared to the $500 per person it would have cost to play 18 at Pebble Beach!). A herd of small deer were hanging out on the course but we managed to avoid hitting them.

No power outage tonight and we had a great, hot meal at the International Cafe, followed by warm chocolate chip cookies when we arrived back at the Inn! A great end to the perfect Monterey day!

Next stop, Santa Barbara.

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