Carson Mansion in Eureka
This morning we had to pack up and leave Laurel and Fisher's house. To say it was sad, depressing and awful would be a vast understatement. I gained some new family and I don't think I could have had a better time with the two of them. What great folks! After we said our good byes and see you soons, Derek and I headed to downtown Eureka to see the Carson Mansion, and boy was it a mansion. It is an over-the-top Victorian house built by a logging tycoon back in the day. It is now a club of sorts and sadly there are no tours for the general public. Seeing the outside of it was good enough for me. We rode out of Eureka and hit Loleta, famous for their cheese factory (that we did not stop at). Instead, we went to the LOLETA BAKERY, which was recommended by a bike rider we met changing a flat on his LANDSHARK bike. I am so glad he did! I got a pizza with yams, onions and broccoli. It was off the chain! Derek and I agreed that this was just the kind of place that Roxanne could open up! After Loleta came the small town of Ferndale. This place was straight out of a movie. There were Victorian homes around every corner, a cute main street/downtown, a workshop with a guy building wooden kayaks in the front window and a model boat builder who's family has lived here since 1850. It was a place I could see myself living and having my goats and chickens! It was neat. After riding through endless farms and meeting a rider from Switzerland, we arrived at the famous Avenue of the Giants. I don't think the Redwoods will ever let me down. Immediately the area grew quiet and shaded with a warm breezes. This section has some of the tallest and oldest Redwoods in existence. Riding through them on bike really lets you grasp how big and powerful they are. I brought with me a vintage souvenir booklet of postcards of the Redwood Highway. The pictures that unfold in the book are of famous sights along the Redwood Highway and dates back to the 1950s. Part of this trip was for me to find out what is still around from these postcards and how they have changed. I took a picture at the Eternal Tree House, a room with windows carved out of a Redwood, and one at the Founder's Tree, which was once the tallest living tree in the world. It was cool to see these things still around and how they have changed, and remained the same. This is the nostalgia I am in love with, and I am glad to see others still find it charming. On the other hand, I have to admit that I have been very bummed out with the souvenir shops. I had great dreams of seeing neat gifts similar to those I collect from garage sales and antique stores. Unfortunately, they all have the same boring, in-unique items that the next has. For some reason, it seems like people don't put as much effort into creating the objects that people collect to remember their trips. Maybe people don't care as much due to digital cameras and iPhones. A tacky, not kitschy enough shot glass does the trick for some, but not me. I hope to find some antique shops soon to find some of these forgotten treasures. On the way to the campsite Derek spotted a dead baby deer. It was laying on the ground gracefully, as if it was sleeping, not dead. Though it was sad, it was beautiful at the same time. I think it may come up in a ceramic piece down the line. Keep an eye out. We arrived at the campsite to find it full of new people. Our rest day put us a day behind our friends we have met along the way and on track with a new group of people. We met a cool couple from San Francisco and had a nice chat. Turns out he knows some people from Gainesville! He also has a set of Swift Industries PANNIERS, just like me. I highly recommend these handmade in the USA bags (If you know me you know I love bags)! They also each had a set of small antlers they found at a thrift store attached to their bikes. Cool! After eating my leftover pizza from the bakery and some more chocolate chip cookies, I am ready for bed. I do miss hanging out with Laurel and Fisher though! A game of chase the bad guys (Derek and I being chased by Fisher) would be pretty fun right now.