Abbi and Harry: great californian hospitality.

30 Oct

Good Bye San Francisco. Next stop: San Luis Obispo. The route 101 also called PCH ( Pacific Highway Coast ) is one of the best ever, but Natasha had wished to drive through Big Basin Redwoods Park and I was really excited to accompany her in this.

We passed through a lovely forest, and we bumped into beautiful and tall trees, a deer and lots of squirrels that reminded me of London, where you can meet them very often.I really loved that break from the city, crowd, lights and being in the middle of nature.

For lunch we stopped at Monterey, just on the ocean and headed to Carmel by the sea: very tranquil and tidy, famous for its golf fields and for its beautiful houses owned by international jet set.

At San Luis Obispo (SLO) we were welcomed by the sweetest dog ever: Abbi: a 3 years old Goldman retriever and even though I am not the biggest dog friend I fell in love with her immediately. Honey-brown hair and the sweetest look, very well educated and respectful.

She is as sweet as her owners, Sarah and Derek. I had met Sarah in Chicago few days before but she had invited us to stop at her place while driving from San Francisco to LA.

I loved her house with soft colours with personalized decoration and a cozy kitchen.

Our hosts took us to have dinner at a really cool restaurant downtown SLO called Cioppinot: fresh and tasty food as well as the cocktails and wine, but we decided to go for a dessert at Cold Stone’s, a famous ice cream chain in USA. The specialty is that you choose your favorite snack from the bar and they cut it in many pieces and mix them with ice cream on a metal surface. Delicious.

The following morning I went for breakfast with Tosh and Sarah at Starbucks before to go to Avila Beach for a couple of hours. We walked on the sand and then on the pier until the end and also took the stairs that bring into the water from there and I remember to have seen those stairs in Baywatch. We saw a big black seal floating but I couldn’t catch a picture unfortunately.

I didn’t know that San Luis Obispo is famous for its many wineries. We went for a wine tasting afternoon at Tolosa and Claiborne & Churchill

We tasted a few wines and watched some of its processes while talking about everyday life.

I had the perfect excuse not to get too drunk since I had promised Sarah and Derek to cook for them for dinner.

The menu offered one: bruschetta with cherry tomatoes, garlic and basil, pasta with zucchini, ham and Parmesan and a Tiramisu for dessert and because the following day would be Sara’s birthday.

We had a lovely night, I also had the time to write a little bit on the blog and I liked it; I found that it is very relaxing and I am excited to think that wherever I will be, whenever I will want, I will be able to read it from any device.

Sarah, Derek and Abbi were great hosts; there are no words for thanking them.

She warned me that her brother Brad, who would be our next host, would keep the flag of hospitality high as well.

We just stop in Santa Monica for lunch and we get to Ventura to visit Brad and his lovely wife in the early afternoon.

We found another nice hairy guest:  Harry. I really can’t remember what kind of dog it is but he was really funny. He welcomed us together with Brad at the back of the house. An amazing house in a beautiful area. We got comfortable, had a Pacifico beer, had a chat with Brad and waited for his lovely wife to come back from work. In the meantime, Brad was preparing the barbecue.

Jennifer, Brad’s wife arrived around 6 pm and we started a nice chat, played with Harry and had an awesome barbecue with roasted potatoes and broccoli, accompanied by a delicious Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon by 2008: Stags’ Leap.

The company, the weather, the environment and the food was just exquisite, I really would like to thank these two cousins of Natasha with their partners, who made this Californian adventure authentic, genuine and absolutely fantastic. I felt at home at anytime.

If there is something I would have never imagined to do in US and that was probably a wish when I saw Tom Cruise in Top Gun is visiting a  military base.  Thanks again for adding this amazing value to my trip adventure.

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