Sunday, October 10, 2010

Camels, Dams, Apples and Old Jeans

We set out around noon to explore.  We'd had a good night's rest and the day was glorious... perfectly blue sky, very sunny, but not too hot.  We would drive as we pleased, stopping when something struck our interest, moving towards the higher elevations.

One thing we noted on our drive was the disproportionate numbers of Mercedes and BMW's on these southern California roads.  All's I have to say about that is there is an awful lot of money hurtling along the roads here...no matter what they say about the sad state of the Californian economy.  Be this as it may, the "game" became sort of an "I spy" game of being the first to spot the next BMW or Mercedes...

Joe has been in California for more than 30 years.  He recalls the days when a person could drive pretty much anywhere, and could park almost anywhere, and, for that matter, could sleep almost anywhere.  Those days are, I'm afraid, long gone, and everything seems to be owned by someone wanting money to even stop for a leg stretch.  We did stop in a county park called Dos Picos, where they wanted $3 for the privilege of entering...  once past the guard gate, it became abundantly clear the only thing there was a bunch of picnic areas under a bunch of trees.  Nice and breezy, comfortable and all, but not worth the $3 for a 10 minute break.
Nice Shaded Picnic Tables -- Dos Picos
On our way back to the main road, we stopped at a yard sale where Joe had a nice chat with the folks selling their goods to help the Cancer Awareness drive. 

Sure, why not???
We bought a few books and I found a couple of pairs of jeans to add to my knock-about wardrobe, and $5 later we were on our way to Julian, CA ... famous for their apple pies, according to the yard sale folks.

Judy -- Yard Saling

Along the way we stopped at Sutherland Dam.  The lake is quite picturesque, but is closed, according to the sign, so we were limited to picture taking and exploring the dam itself.
Lake at Sutherland Dam
Pretty Blue Water

Sutherland Dam
Taking Pictures of Sutherland Dam

And then we were back on our way to the land of the apple pies.

I think the most interesting thing we saw today was the camel farm.  I just glimpsed a camel as we were driving by, and then we saw the farm which advertised camel milk, etc.  So we took a side road that brought us to the backside of the farm and enjoyed a little photo op with camels.... Not something we see every day in little old Gloucester, VA.

Not Sahara Camels...
Ye Olde Camel Farm
Got Milk????
As we approached Julian, it became apparent it was VERY TOURISTY.... the BMW and Mercedes count leaped up and by the time we reached the actual town, we were feeling claustrophobic ... the narrow roads were packed with walking apple-fans, cycling apple-fans, horse and buggy-driven apple-fans and automobile-driving apple-fans....
Julian, CA
Pony cart rides

We blew through that town as quickly as we could, ending up on another road, more deserted and bordering overgrown apple orchards.  The trees looked long forgotten, but they held lots of red, ripe fruit.  We helped ourselves to a few of the local apples and were not disappointed.

Picking Apples
Still, we had come all this way to Julian, and even though our apple-snacks had taken the edge off, we were still hungry, so we headed back into the town to eat supper.  All of the eating establishments looked pretty busy, so we opted for the one my brother had recommended....  We were seated quickly, served quickly, and the food was typical tourist fare.  We ordered more than our stomachs could hold, so we carried our leftovers out with us.  Because we HAD to at least try the famous pies, we did share a slice.  It was quite delicious, but I think it would have been much better, had we not already been so full!

We caught the end of the sunset as we made our way back down from the 4000 foot elevation of Julian, CA.

Sunset from, CA
Thirty minutes later we were back in our hotel room, unloading pictures from the cameras and declaring we'd had a very lovely day.  Tomorrow is another "fun day" where we will once again get together with my brother and his family.  And then it will be back to work for the week.

Nice Day Exploring


6 comments:

Niels said...

Hi Judy, sounds like a really nice trip you have, my wife and I are going to San Francisco next Spring, me going on sabbatical, and it is really like going home for us, especially yard sales and thrift stores are special in california ! buying all my overalls and worn out t shirts over there, so again enjoy and have sunny fun !

Sharon said...

Camel farm, hmm, I would like to have seen them in person, myself. You know, I have lived in CA twice and visited quite a bit (with family there) and never went to a tourist trap. Maybe I missed out, I don't know.
Enjoy your good food at your brother's again! Sounds like it may have to hold you for a while! LOL!

Judy's Corner said...

Niels,

Yes, we are having an adventure. The yard sale was a nice addition to the trip. I did look for more overalls (I only brought two pairs with me) but no such luck. At a dollar per pair of jeans, though, I was happy to add to my knock about wardrobe!

Hope you have fun when you next get back to these parts!

Judy's Corner said...

Sharon,

It was such a cool thing to see. I never knew that WAS camel ranching in CA and I suspect I have not happened on the only camel ranch in the state. Still, it was really neat to see. Of course, without the cameras with decent zoom, we would have only been able to describe what we saw...we were not that close to the animals. In fact, when I looked at my pictures, where I thought I was snapping a couple of camel babies, it turns out I was snapping pictures of two donkeys! LOL

Tonight we eat out with Ray and the family. However, it will be in a restaurant they know and like...so...the food should be good!

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

Hi Judy!! I had to chuckle when you stopped by a yard sale--You are like me and always looking for a deal, no matter where I am!!

Your trip sounds like it's a lot of fun and quite an adventure!! THANKS for taking us along, and THANKS for your kind comments on the loss on our boy Sam! Take care, have fun and be safe!!!

THE OLD GEEZER said...

I live about 80 miles from Julian and I don't remember ever visiting there?

I need to put it on my list of things to do now that I am retired :-)