I know I said two more blogs but there was no smelly the first night and things got a bit hectic after that. So another smorgasbord of songs for the final entry:
Lip Up Fatty
On Wednesday evening we were staying in a very nice hotel but dining opportunities were rather limited. The ‘best’ option was a nearby place called Sizzlers. This is not a chain I have come across before but it is a kind of restaurant/fast food hybrid. On your way in you order an ‘entre’ (main course in English) then help yourself to appetisers while they bring it (note I said bring it NOT cook it). Then you help yourself to dessert. So for $12.99 I got enough chowder, chicken wings and chili to feed an army, then a large portion of cheese and bacon covered chicken (actually runny pale yellow stuff and incinerated bacon flavoured parchment but that is the ‘Merican way) and two very large bowls of ice-cream with caramel sauce. That’s 8 quid in old money!
It is a good job I am soon coming home as my waistline is rapidly expanding.
Oranges and Lemons
A very strange thing happened on Wednesday night…….a curious liquid fell from the sky. Happily we were all tucked up in our beds and by morning the ‘rain’, as we are told it is called, had stopped and the weather was back to normal.
For our penultimate day’s riding we headed out of the LA sprawl to rejoin the beach path at Long Beach where the Queen Mary is now moored as a floating hotel. (Side note: as a child on holiday on the Isle of White I am pretty sure we saw this ship on its final voyage).
Money is evident everywhere with one smallish town boasting TWO Porche dealerships. The Ferrari dealership had probably 50+ cars on its forecourt. I popped into a bank to cash the remaining travellers cheques and the lady at the next counter was withdrawing $250,000…..in CASH.
For our final night of camping we are in the State beach park in San Clemente (Oranges and lemons said the bells….oh come on!) – nice enough and walking distance from the hotel and a half reasonable Irish bar……
Bat Out Of Hell
….I am not aware that anything quite like meatloaf exists outside of ‘Merica but I always try and seek out a portion at some point on a trip. This time it was in Molly somethingorother’s Irish bar and very tasty two. I even had mash, rather than chips, and VEGETABLES…..I can feel my scurvy improving already!
The Final Countdown
For the final dash to the border it was first necessary to negotiate Camp Pendleton – a US Marine base through which the route passes. Note to would-be terrorists: to infiltrate ‘Merican military bases simply wear lycra and make sure you are at least 3rd in a group of cyclists since they only seem to check the passports of the front two!
To round off the day’s excitement there was an ocean voyage, or at least a ferry across San Diago bay, to pick up the causeways that run out through Chula Vista and to the Mexican border at Imperial Beach.
It is a weird place….completely deserted apart from US Border Control agents with binoculars and the constant drone of helicopters monitoring the border.
So, everyone made it and a quick glass of fizz was consumed to mark the occasion before heading to the hotel in Chula vista for a celebration meal…..Mexican naturally!
End of the trip and time to go home which means….gulp…..time to say goodbye to LM2. She has been a faithfull companion and I will miss her despite her drink problem
The Sound of Silence
No more blogging until the next trip……now where is that atlas?