Driving into Mendocino is always like coming home to us. We don't know why this is, but it was true even the first time we went there, perhaps 8 or 9 years ago. It's like we almost know what lies around every corner before we see it.
One benefit is that Mendocino, by intention, changes very little. Businesses move around, and start up and fail. I think our vacation rental agency is now in the third space since we started using them. But the resident population works hard at keeping the historical accuracy of the structures, and rigidly prohibits "progress" in the form of chains of any sort. This results in sparse services. There are no Starbucks, but there are coffee shops that are open...well, sometimes. There are no McDonald's, but Mendo Burger will serve you an adequate slider. A gallon of gas will cost you $1.50 more than at any station outside, and is only available for about 3 hours a day. During the week. Sometimes.
It's very hard to get the Coastal Commission and the Historical Review Committee to give approval of any new construction, so building sites are few, far between and expensive. It keeps out the riff-raff, keeps the population exclusive, and makes the tourists feel good, I suppose. Like many people, we'd love to live here, but practicality tells us that there's no living to be made here, and living costs are even higher than Southern California.
There is no cell-phone service, sort of. All of the above are available down the road in Fort Bragg, a town of about 6000. One time we were sitting in the Mendocino Headlands State Park, out by the water, and a pickup truck came roaring up and slid to a stop beside us. The driver leapt out, jumped into the bed of the truck and held his cell-phone aloft, trying to get a signal. Even then, I think it was sporadic. He shouted a lot.
Today, somehow, my mom got through on my cellphone, don't ask me how. We're across the bay from Mendocino. This is the view from our bedroom. Pretty nifty. We see the lights of the town at night. Chapman's Point, where the house is, is very quiet. Last night, the rain fell, and the surf crashed, and the fire crackled. All noises we enjoy.
Today we woke late, blogged a bit, and then went into Fort Bragg. We ate a moderately decent hot dog, and visited Pippi's Longstockings, a sock store. That's right, a sock store. They don't sell much else...a little jewelry, a sock monkey or two. But mostly, it's the most unique socks you've ever seen. They carry a nice selection of socks for those of us with ankles that need more room and no constriction. In colors! I stocked up two years ago, so it's time again.
We got a more comfy chair for John to type in at the Humane Society thrift store, and came home. For dinner, I cooked some of the Black Pig bacon. It was bacony-good. Mmmmm, bacon. The pig did not die in vain. I think his name was Quentin. Quentin the Pig.
Somehow, vacation days seem to fly by, don't they?
It's raining again. Perhaps we'll retire to the bedroom, and start up the fireplace that's right there in an alcove. That sounds like a good idea.
Tomorrow is John's birthday. We'll see what the day brings. May skip a blog.