Out of the Bay and Into the Wine

Pre-PostWell, despite my half-ass efforts I have not really maintained this blog in addition to the other two I’m running. I think I will just start posting the same thing here that I post on the blog for our 2-year bike ride, Barely Functional Adults. This was originally posted on May 5. As a reminder,this is pretty much an uncensored version of the events of our bike ride. If you are uncomfortable hearing about sex, drugs, profanity, etc you should check follow our PG-version at www.10LegsWillTravel.wordpress.com . This is a warning. If you don’t want to hear about these adult actions please leave now.

So, I feel like the last post was kind of shitty. I wasn’t really in the mood to write but felt the need for force myself to. I should have known this is a mistake. I love writing, but if I’m not in the mood it is obvious. Sorry for the shitty writing last time… onward to better things.

Leaving San Francisco was bitter-sweet. We were all eager to get on the road again but that city had a great feeling to it. It takes something special to make us feel vanilla but the kinky sexy vibe that seemed to ooze from the city was enough to make us feel “normal”. Basically, we loved it. There is something about the titillation that comes from being in a place that doesn’t hide, fear, or shame sex that makes the spirit feel truly alive. I am sure we will all be back, in fact, it is likely we will all live there at some point, but probably not after our bike ride. It was just too expensive and crowded for our current tastes, after Los Angeles we need something a little smaller to call home.

Anyway, we headed out from San Francisco towards the East Bay (probably not the right phrase, I have no idea what the fuck I’m talking about most of the time). We took a ferry into Oakland, rode through Oakland and Berkeley, and into the hills to the north. Our plan for Friday was to crash with Anna’s cousin and her husband, Katie and Neal. The ride itself had a few hills but the real thing that stuck in our minds was the difference between Oakland and Berkeley. The ride through Oakland felt a little dangerous… the roads poorly maintained, zero bike lanes, and traffic that seemed mostly unregulated. We saw cop cars all over the place and the police presence was strong. Berkeley was only a few blocks away but felt incredibly different with freshly paved roads, dedicated bike routes, slow traffic, and the only people we saw were college students and random touristy pedestrians. It is kind of crazy how the environment in the US can change block to block.

Katie and Neal put us up at their gorgeous house in Orlinda. Even though they were in the process of repainting the house they opened their doors to us. They had some amazing decks… I love a good deck, they are great for BBQing, banging in an exhibitionist way, enjoying a fine cigar, and just relaxing after a long day of work/play. We didn’t bang, BBQ, or have a cigar on their deck but we did get a chance to relax a bit, share a beer, and then go out for some Thai food. I had only met Katie and Neal once before this and it was awesome to spend some more time with them. I really hope we get a chance to hang out more in the future.

We left Orlinda late in the morning to go to my cousin’s house. I had not seen Emily, my cousin, in a long time… with the exception of my grandmother’s funeral it has been almost a decade. Emily and I always had a bit of a rivalry going, we are the two oldest of our clans and I think that lead to some unnecessary, but probably predictable, hostility between us. Luckily, this trip really showed how that negativity towards us was no longer the case. I had a fucking awesome time hanging out with Emily, her husband Joe, and their four kids. I am often pretty negative towards the idea of having kids, and many times it seems people have kids for all the wrong reasons. That isn’t the case with Emily and Joe, they are doing parenting right (in my unhumble opinion). Their kids are all individuals and are encouraged to pursue their own passions. They are taught not to judge and embrace individuality. If I had kids I hope I would be able to raise them as well as Emily and Joe do. It was fucking awesome to share beer, Jager bombs, and some great conversations that hit every subject with them.

Our time with Emily in Hercules eventually ended and we hit the road with a lot of hope for the future and a wicked hangover. Apparently when you try to bike up a hill with 100 lbs in tow after a night of Jager you kind of just want to die, especially when you find yourself being passed by a couple hundred friendly people in bright jerseys who want to greet you with a smile and a conversation. I never knew smiling people in bright yellow could inspire rage and vomit.

The next cities on our list were Sonoma and Santa Rosa. According to Wikipedia there are not any people in Sonoma, just a bunch of grapes and rich people on vacation. Wikipedia is wrong. I was able to find a couchsurfer in Sonoma and she agreed to let us fall asleep in her living room. It turned out to be an amazing city, probably because of the people we met. We got into town around 4pm and met up with our host (Suzanne… or Sue as everyone else called her, I never know what to call people…) at a local Irish bar. In case you are wondering, this is a good sign. Our brief meeting with Sue turned into several hours of drinking beer with a variety of people she knew. There was Sue, Kenneth, Kyle, and the hot vegan couple whose names I can’t remember (I’d tap that). To be honest, I felt really welcome with the group. It was like a bunch of old friends in a sitcom rotating around for comic relief and just enjoying life. We talked about Burning Man, were open about MDMA use, discussed brewing beer, and a whole lot of other things. The conversations just seemed so natural, which is good for three introverts like us.

Sue’s roommates ended up being just as cool. Even though Sue wasn’t around when we arrived but Natalie and Brian (or Bryan??) made us feel right at home. I really wasn’t expecting that from Sonoma, it seemed like a hole-in-the-wall town but it had a lot of love in it. It felt like a potential home but, sadly, we only got one night there. Oh well, now we head out to Santa Rosa for some beers and a couple days of rest.

Post-Post 1: Also, we have set up a GoFundMe account for our ride. If you enjoy the adventure or just want to receive a post card, booty pic, or vegan meal check us out here

Post-Post 2: If you would like to see all our pictures you can check out our Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/10legswilltravel.

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