New Brighton (3)

IMG_0411This was a special weekend out because we got to hang out with fellow Altoiste, Annie Wynn. It was also special because I had managed, six months prior, at precisely 8:00 am, to snag a premium site at one of the most popular campgrounds in California. It was much appreciated by me that a) the area was not on fire, and b) it was beautiful and sunny and in the low 70s outside.

IMG_0439Friday Annie came over while I whipped up a Blue Apron curry dish. She brought wine and we spent a wonderful evening catching up. Saturday we split up, with Richard tackling a bike ride around Elkhorn Slough, and me going for a paddle. The remarkable thing about this outing was that the water was filled with jellyfish. Actually, I guess the water was filled with Brown Sea Nettles, and had been for the past couple of months. It was impossible to paddle without coming into contact with at least one of them, but I figured that must be ok. I concentrated really hard on staying in the boat, though I did see another kayaker flip over.

IMG_0448Saturday night we enjoyed a nice sunset, met back up with Annie, and went to Manuel’s Restaurant in town. I recommend the Saturday special: Camarones de Diego, which are prawns wrapped in bacon, stuffed with cheese, dipped in cocktail sauce, and served in a crispy tortilla bowl filled with rice. Uh YES please! After, we hit Mariannes ice cream across the street. Pretty nice night! Then it was back to our respective Altos and we finished the evening by catching up on the last episode of Game of Thrones. Now I don’t have to worry about seeing spoilers on Facebook.

Sunday we chatted a little, baked cinnamon rolls, and headed home around noon. A couple of things that got us thinking this weekend: we need to re-investigate some possible leaks because we saw water on the ground under the hot water heater and again under the shower. We thought we had that one fixed. The water heater looks like it’s coming from the sacrificial anode and it’s probably time to replace that anyway, though that wouldn’t explain the leak. Also, the coffee battery does not seem to be holding a charge as well and we’re about to head into a week of no hookups. This has us concerned. It could be that it is not getting a full charge at home because the charger cuts out when it reaches 13.6 V. There may be a trick to make it trickle charge, or the battery may need replacing. In general, we did not get a lot of solar this weekend because the sun was so low in the sky that it was obstructed most of the day by a row of strategically placed, sun blocking trees. So that reduced the amount of charge going to the coffee battery. Still, it used to be able to last just fine with NO sun for at least two nights. The dreaded “just get a generator” conversation happened again, along with a repeat of the “just get a standalone solar panel” conversation. It’s fun to repeat these discussions every few months and wind up making the same decisions. For now, we are investigating better home charging and will take it from there. Richard’s assignment for the week is to identify all possible locations in the vicinity of Bodega Bay where a generator could be purchased if we run into problems next week. In any case, I’m not that worried about the leaks, and we do have a backup system in place for coffee if need be. And Bodega Bay does have decent coffee places (we checked), so I’m hopeful we will survive.

IMG_0445IMG_0465Nice weekend and I got an adorable pair of otter socks to boot! Thanks Annie, it was great to see you again!

I didn’t note mileage data this time, but it took around 3 hours to get there Friday (traffic) versus around 2 to get home midday Sunday. Site 82 – would have had great solar if it weren’t winter. Good LTE for both of us. No hookups, but there’s a good dump station there.

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