The land of plenty, you would think. I would anyway. But my eyes were already torn open by the veterans, junkies and bums of San Francisco begging on the pavements. Yes, to an extent this is a problem of every big city. But the sheer scale of veterans begging on streets just shocked me. Can you imagine fighting for a country that will discard you and let you slip into drug abuse and onto the street? I realise though that I tend to concentrate on the rough edges of life, so I'll stop my rant here and tell you about the good.
Early in the morning, after I didn't see the sunrise for that thick fog, we were rolling down and out of San Francisco, when I've noticed that Jupiter is blind on one eye. Jupiter is the 16 years old Toyota Tacoma that we've rented for the duration of our road trip, 44 days. ...and by 'blind on one eye' I mean that one of the front lights was blown. So that was our first trip and first stop. Get a new bulb, google how to change it and I even got dirty, but done it myself and didn't even took me whole morning. By about 11am we were on Highway 1 with views of the ocean. We took about 5 days between SF and LA, going through Pescadero and spent our first nigh in Sam McDonald County Park, Santa Cruz, Monterey where we have spent a day in the Aquarium, Big Sur which was not accessible due to a wast bush fire, Santa Monica where Route 66 ends and Majka decided to drag me for a roller coaster ride, Santa Barbara and Malibu before we've arrived to the city of angels. For 3 days we were being good tourist, getting lost in and around Hollywood before we've hit the road again. This time east and inland, with first stop being Joshua Tree National Park and we've happily spent another 3 days here. Amazing park, even though quite hot in August. Apparently it's just overseas tourists that visit that time of the year, Americans deem it too hot during summer and plan their trips for autumn or winter when much cooler. The landscape is almost alien and the Joshua trees are from another world, but the best was the dark moonless night sky. Just amazing.
For now we were heading towards Arizona on Interstate 10, but this wasn't all we were going to see from California. We will be crossing it again on a different route on our way back to Oakland. So long bear flag state...