Sunday, March 3, 2013

Leaving Monterey

Monterey Coast
 It’s hard to describe Monterey from a fresh perspective. I have been here so many times, it is all expected; the knarled tree trunks with branches leaning into the wind, fog swirling slowly between the buildings, the bark of sea lions, the crowds of people leaning over the docks watching the sea lions wallow (wallowing must be a word invented for sea lions on land), otters floating around on their backs with tasty treats on their tummies with seagulls trying to convince the otters to share, and everywhere is the hum of foreign languages.

The Coast Guard Jetty
 When Joe finished his SCUBA class we walked down to the fisherman’s wharf and shared a sandwich. I can only take so much of the hustle-bustle of the wharf shopping district. A great alternative is The Taste Of Monterey, a nice wine tasting store at the end of the pier. It doubles as a cheap way to sit indoors overlooking the ocean. Just buy a 9-15 dollar glass of your favorite wine and settle into a leather chair in front of a 100 foot-long wall of plate-glass. Hint; you have to pay for the tasting, but if you want to buy a glass of wine they will usually let you try the wine you think you’ll order for free.
Back to the motel for Joe’s nap and more writing. The head instructor, Dick Motz, treated us to dinner at the Fish Hopper, just underneath The Taste Of Monterey. Very good food, but very expensive. I had a cup of clam chowder (clam chowder is a west coast specialty—a creamy white concoction with little chunks of clams and potatoes. On the east coast it’s red), and fish-and-chips (an American coastal favorite of fried fish with tarter sauce and crunchy french-fries). It was delicious. The wine was standard, but good.
So today Joe is back in the ocean as I write this. He is freezing cold, but pretending is doesn’t bother him. I’m toasty warm in Café La Strada, sipping a soy latte. We head back home this afternoon to our little house and cat.

Between Dives

In May we will be going to Milan to see Gianluca, Egle, and Veronica, so until then . . . ciao!

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