Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Summer Vacation Part V - The Road Home

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When we last left our intrepid band of family members, they were leaving the confines of the Puget Sound area, and making their way back home to Southern California. SoCal, where mold isn't the state flower, and sunshine isn't an endangered species. Ah yes, I was so looking forward to getting back home.

After 10 hours of uneventful driving through Washington, Oregon, and into California, we stopped for the night in Redding, CA. The first order of business was getting a place to stay, and we opted for a local motel which appeared a little bit worse for the wear. However, we actually had our best night of sleep there, so I can't complain too much. They had a pool (the temperature was very hot), wireless net access, and free donuts and coffee for breakfast.

After securing accommodations for the night and letting the kids cool off in the pool, we went out to eat at Buzz's Crab Seafood restaurant, an establishment that came highly recommended. Redding doesn't conjure up images of waves breaking on the beach, crabs skittering over rocks, nor sharks (lasers attached to their frickin' heads on not), so I was a bit apprehensive about the place. My fears were misplaced, as the food was great and the setting informal (a big plus when traveling with three kids couped up all day in a car). Everyone enjoyed their meal, and the night was still young, so we all decided to go for a walk and see what was available locally.

We had heard a little bit about Turtle Bay Exploration Park, so we bugged our hostess for directions and made our way to the park. The park is next to the Sacramento river, and the most striking feature of the park is the Sundial Bridge which goes over it. As it was getting on fairly late in the day, most of the park was closed except for the bridge and the trails adjacent to the river. Here are a few pictures:

So, we hiked around a bit, took some pictures, and headed back to the room to catch some Z's. The following morning, we ate a few donuts and hit the road homeward bound. The remainder of the trip was uneventful, save for the wonderful traffic in Los Angeles.

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