California, Part One - December 2014

Another christmas trip to California.  

We took a trip up Hwy 1 to stay at the Madonna Inn and visit Hearst Castle.  First stop: Malibu...specifically, Zuma Beach.  

Not many people there.  

Had never seen these weird birds before - clearly in the gull family, but thay had a funny crown of black feathers.  

After a bit of drive and a side trip to Ventura, we made it to San Luis Obispo and
the Madonna Inn.  

We stayed in the room called Swiss Rock.  It was always a dream to stay here, and it lived up to all my kitschy expectations.  

And then there's this.  

The mirror had metal birds all around it, and I took a photo of one, as you should.  

Night shot of the pool.  

Awesome light fixture number one.  

Awesome light fixture number two.  

Some more photos from the next morning - our room was in the bottom middle of this building with the rest of the rock rooms.  

The main building where the restaurants and bar are.  

The other side of that building.  

Entrance to the coffee shop, where we had breakfast.  

The bar at the coffee shop, complete with old timers that are probably regulars.  

The steak house was epicly pink.  The photo doesn't come close to doing it justice.  

Chelsea at the bar, complete with martini glass for posed photo purposes.  

The farm attached to the Inn.  Pretty country, helped by recent rains to green things up.  

We continued up the coast and stopped off briefly at Moonstone beach.

The next stop was to see the elephant seals - there were lots of them, they smelled bad, and they were lazy as shit.  Living the life.  

Check out the scars on the neck of the male from fighting over the ladies.  They might look lazy but it's occasionally a violent life.  

The one in the middle is scratching itself like a person!  Ridiculous creatures.  

Very elephanty.

The two in the back bowed up one one another briefly, but the difference in size dictated it not go far.  

Hey, crows like to stare at elephant seals too.  

Some more snaps from along the coast...

Stopped at a dead motel to explore the coast behind it.  

There were even some lazy loafs beached back here as well.  

No shortage of cormorants staked out on the rocks.  

Sometimes you ogle the nature, other times you ogle the cars that brought other people to ogle the nature.  1930 Ford Model A.  

A poor focus job on my part, probably because I was so surprised at how bold this squirrell was.  

Piedras Blancas lighthouse in the distance.

More in part two...