Saturday, January 11, 2014

Direction and Misdirection

One of the things we love about staying in bed and breakfast inns is the chance to meet new people. This time we ran into a young couple who were in California for a wedding and then came up to tour the wine country. He works with the UN training security forces in Liberia and she is finishing up a political science dissertation on community development there. So after a couple of hours of conversation on Friday, our last day, we were off to a late start. Finally, my foot was finally painfree enough for me to walk comfortably and so we planned a bit of a walk, with the Robert Louis Stevenson State Park as our destination.

We never made it. The dominant question in wine country encounters is always “What wineries did you see, who gives a good tour.”  Our answer, couched in more diplomatic terms is that we don’t really go to wineries, after more than forty years touring here, been there done that. Only it turned out that Sharon wanted to see one specific winery that was written up as giving a porton of its profits to animal rights. Well the theme of the day was emerging as “we never found it.” But opposite where it was supposed to be was a sign for Christopher Creek  Winery consisting of a few acres of vines, and a modest house and shed not the gradiose faux chateaux and villas that seem obligatory for tasting rooms around here. Up we went and encountered a wine that Sharon rather liked and a young man, Joe Foppoli, who is a fourth generation Northern California winemaker and new owner of the brand.

Following that we set out to find the RLS State Park. Between us Sharon misread the location and then I was unable to follow the subsequent corrections, so with the winter day waning we settled for the Napa State Park, on second effort found a reasonably secluded trail (the first one followed the highway) 

and on it we came upon this pioneer cemetery connected to the Tucker Farm, but apparently serving a larger community through the White Church. The history is obscure, but here are some images.

 and a shot at sunset driving home

Today we head home after a restful low key week. In part, this week has been a trial run, including blogging again, for our forthcoming trip across the Southwestern United States slated for mid-late March. So, stay tuned.

And finally, no trip is complete without another car image. no, not the 1M this time, but a 1963-64 Studebaker Avanti, in a way a distant forerunner of the BMW, a pioneering sport coupe. Some versions of the car were as fast as today’s amped up automobiles. Ever since first seeing it on Wednesday I been jonesing . . .

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