Monday, August 23, 2010

Santa Cruz to Sausalito to San Francisco

Stephen just left after his annual visit. His visits often mean new adventures, and this year we decided on a zip-line adventure to go with the usual assortment hikes and restaurant sampling.

Last weekend, we drove up to Sausalito and toured the seaside village by way of the "Sausalito Secret Stairs" - a series of steep, underused staircases that lead to a beautiful hill overlooking the Bay. Climbing the stairs was an adventure in itself -- it's been 8 months now since we moved out of San Francisco so the coastal hills were quite a challenge -- but the view made it all worthwhile.

This most recent weekend, Steve, Ally and Sascha joined us for a walk along the Bay to Chrissy Field and to check out the Wave Organ, an environmental art sculpture comprised of listening tubes that stick out of the water like periscopes. It's like a giant man-made symphonic sea shell. We heard subtle sounds of drums, cymbals and flowing water rumbling up the pipes as little waves slapped against the sculpture.

The view from Chrissy Field

Pearl listens to the music of the Bay

The highlight of the week was the redwood canopy tour, an amazing ziplines and rope bridge course just outside of Santa Cruz, where we flew through redwood trees at up to 150 feet up from the ground. The longest zip-line we zipped through was 450 feet long, and we got great rushes when cannon-balling through it (we were told that one can move up to 35 miles per hour!). Check out the video of Pearl coming in to land after the final zipline.

Pearl on her practice run at the zipline course

A rope bridge between two redwoods, 140 feet above ground level

Pearl completes the course

Pearl and Stephen, back at ground level

Garden Update: In addition to the lettuce and basil which we've continued to harvest, we've started picking the kale (for kale chips), cilantro (for guacamole), and radish (for salads). The beans have started climbing the ladder Sascha and Chris built. The tomatoes and peppers have started to ripen on the vine and change color.

A close-up of the beans climbing the ladder

The tomatoes are almost ripe

Our first homegrown radish

This past weekend we planted the blueberry bushes and hope to get another round of planting in before Labor Day. September will be busy, starting with a trip east to visit family, two baseball games, another fruits-of-the-forest hike with Feral Kevin, a visit from Pia, an exploratory trip to the tattoo studio, a housemate search, Pearl's return to school, and lots and lots of planting, gardening and harvesting. Phew.

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