|Two weeks of driveway mooching--quiet and private|
The morning began with the lightest misting rain, but that burned off before my departure. It was just part and parcel of the Carlsbad experience, walking out in the morning to a gray, overcast sky, the lightest mist of precipitation cool to the skin, the faint smell of the briny ocean perfuming the breeze off the ocean. I rode at a steady but easy clip, enjoying the sights, especially once I dropped off the hills above the ocean and reached the beach area. Carlsbad has a long paved sidewalk that skirts the beach, and the road along the ocean includes well-planned bicycle lanes for each direction, north and south, miles and miles of bicycling and walking opportunities.
I headed south toward my destination of Carlsbad State Park. Although there are hills, none are excessive and the ride is easy. At several points there are long stretches of parallel parking available for beach goers, a bike lane next to the parked cars, but with a safe zone between so bicyclists don't get "doored." Along this stretch, I saw a tiny, homemade "standy" trailer parked, a "for sale" sign on its side. I rode by, admiring the craftsmanship, but then turned back to ask for a photo and maybe to ask a few questions.
|Homemade tiny trailer/toy hauler|
|A toy hauler capacity with a back deck|
|Beautifully finished interior|
After a bit more riding, passing beach volleyballers stretching and warming up and surfers out beyond the swells sitting their boards, I crested the next hill and stopped at a traffic light. A young man at a commuter bus stop asked me a question, rapidly speaking Spanish. I responded, ¿Que? He asked if I spoke Spanish. Un poquito, I said. ¿Inglés? he asked. When I nodded, the young man said he was up from Mexico, meeting friends, but his cellphone was dead and he needed to find out where the McDonalds was where he was to meet them. We searched on my phone and found the McDonalds he needed was just three tenths of a mile away, across the ocean highway and over an overpass to cross the freeway. He gave me a "Thank you, sir," and I was on my way.
This bicycle ride today was much easier for me because I knew my route, having traveled it several times already. Carlsbad State Park is dominated by the Pacific Ocean, the campground on the bluffs above the ocean. The campground is also close to the four-lane ocean frontage road, but even that manmade reality does not overshadow the ocean. I meandered along the camping strip this trip, and snapped a few photos of interesting rigs after chatting with owners. Quite a variety of rigs were showcased at the campground, which has almost completely primitive sites, without water or electricity. The campground does have modern restrooms, available spigots, and dump stations, though. A few solar arrays were in view, and the sound of a few generators also filled the air as the campers got on with their day.
|A nice CampInn|
|A classic Airstream at Carlsbad SP|
|A Thule rooftop and a 3/4 surround shade tent|
|The Retro trailers: as the owner said, "Everything you need in a small space."|
Heading back home, since my wife Sandy was at a business meeting for the day, I stopped at the Harbor Fish Cafe in Carlsbad for lunch, sitting on a cement bench on the bluff above the ocean, eating my fish and chips (a unique meal for my primarily vegetarian self), enjoying the slight breeze off the sea, the pelicans flying by in stately formation, and me humorously keeping an eye out for hungry seagulls swooping down. It was a grand last day on my bike, one in which I had finally felt more comfortably at home in the town, freeway driving aside.
|What greater views for a bicycle day ride?|